Medieval Castles: Donnington Castle
1398 AD
Open to Visitors

Donnington Castle is a ruined medieval castle founded by Sir Richard Abberbury the Elder under a licence granted by Richard II in 1386. The surviving castle gatehouse dates from this period.

The castle was originally built in a rectangular form and enclosed by a curtain wall with a round tower at each of the four corners. Halfway along the two walls running from west to east were two square towers. The courtyard would probably have contained a hall, kitchens, and accommodation for guests.

The castle was bought by Thomas Chaucer and its buildings considerably enlarged during the years that followed. 

Donnington was taken under royal control during the Tudor period and given to Charles Brandon, 1st Duke of Suffolk. By the time the castle and manor returned to the Crown in 1535 the structure was in a state of decay. In 1646 Parliament voted to demolish it, and only the gatehouse was left standing.

Gateway to Donnington Castle, the last country residence of Chaucer.
Gateway to Donnington Castle, the last country residence of Chaucer in 1870. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.
The entrance to the gate house in Donnington Castle. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Visit Donnington Castle


Dogs on Leads
Walking Trails
Picnic Area
No Facilities
Carpark (Free 7am-7pm)
No Facilities
Uneven, Steep Slopes


Any reasonable daylight hours, exterior viewing only. 


Donnington Castle Farm Cottage, Castle Ln, Donnington, Newbury RG14 2LE


0370 333 1181




Similar Castles

Barnard Castle tower.

Barnard Castle

Barnard Castle is a 12th-century fortress passed to the hands of Richard III.

Aydon Castle. Image courtesy of Flickr Commons, Author: Mr. Evil Cheese Scientist

Aydon Castle

Aydon Castle is a Northumberland fortified manor house built in 1296.

More to see in East England

English Medieval Castles: Norwich Castle

Norwich Castle

Norwich Castle is a motte and bailey medieval royal fortification built around 1066.

Books about Medieval Times