|Gainsborough Old Hall|
Today a couple of my coffee morning pals whisked me off to Gainsborough, with the intent purpose of visiting the Old Hall, the last remaining medieval building in an unremarkable town. This huge, imposing manor house sits incongruously in the middle of a residential area.
|the grand hall|
It is an impressive medieval manor house built by Thomas Burgh in 1455. It had two royal visits, Richard III in 1483 and Henry VIII, together with his fifth wife, Catherine Howard, in 1541. Gifted to the nation in 1970 the hall is now owned by English Heritage and the local district council. Some of the props and costumes looked a bit cheap and amateurish, it would have been nice to see some furnishings that looked a bit more authentic. But the medieval architecture was stunning.
Local legend says the Grey Lady is thought to be the daughter of the Lord of the Manor who fell in love with a poor soldier and planned to elope with him. Her father discovered the plan, locked her away in the tower where she died from a broken heart. Supposedly the girl’s spirit still wanders the tower and the corridor endlessly waiting for her lover to arrive.
I didn’t see the Grey Lady but the stuffed wild boar in the kitchen was a bit disturbing.