The history of Blackwatch Castle is shrouded in mystery, with the origin of its name unknown. The most popular theory about the name, however, makes reference to a wrecked ship that was once moored nearby and named “Blackwatch”.
It’s thought that the castle was built by a man called Sir Richard Dawson for his daughter Isabelle. It’s not known when it was built but records show that it belonged to the Dawsons until 1793. At this time it went into private hands where it remained for many years until it became derelict and fell into decay.
In the early 20th century the castle was bought by a man called Lord Blackwatch. He spent a lot of money restoring it so that it was in good enough condition for him to live there. He also had the castle’s name changed from Blackwatch Castle to Wentwood Manor, and then later renamed it Wentwood Castle.
Lord Blackwatch died in 1944 and his wife Helen continued to live there until she died eleven years later, aged 90. It was then bought by Leonard Jonathan Cavendish, the grandson of Lord Cavendish who owned Wentwood Manor until he sold it to Lord Blackwatch in 1917.
It is thought that the castle may have been used as a hospital for wounded soldiers during World War II.
The floors of the castle are still in good condition, and the remnants of a fireplace can be seen. Also a table and some chairs have survived.
The castle is now a popular place for people to visit and take pictures of. It is also used as setting for many films, TV shows, and adverts. It has also been used as a location to shoot music videos.
In 2006 it was put on the market for sale by owners the Cavendish family who had owned it since 1947. In March 2007 it was sold for £1 million to Terry Parsons who planned to restore it.
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