Sir Walter Raleigh built the ‘new’ Sherborne Castle in 1594 and his original lodge forms the core of the present structure. Accused of treason, Sir Walter died on the block and his estates were forfeited to the Crown. James I allowed Sir John Digby to purchase the Castle in 1617 and it has been the stately home of the Digby family ever since. The four distinctive wings were added in the 1630s. During the Civil War the neighbouringOld Castle was reduced to a ruin and the name Sherborne Castle transferred to the new building.
Prince William of Orange was entertained here in 1688 and George III visited in 1789. ‘Capability’ Brown created the 50-acre lake in 1753 and developed much of the current gardens and parkland into one of his finest lakeland landscapes. During World War I the Castle became a Red Cross Hospital and in World War II it served as Commando HQ for the D-Day landings.
Today, Sherborne Castle reflects a glorious variety of decorative styles from over 400 years of English history, with splendid collections of art, furniture and porcelain. The Castle and Gardens are open to the public during the summer season and are a popular venue for weddings and events.