Raby

Women of Raby – the Untold Story of Anne Vane: Talented Artist – Raby Estates

8th March 2021

Anne Vane (1710-1735) of Raby Castle has been remembered through history as a royal mistress; a woman entangled in a doomed love triangle between Frederick, Prince of Wales, and his once-close friend, Lord John Hervey of Ickworth. Even more scandalous for her time was the fact that she bore two illegitimate children with the Prince. Like […]

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The Stories Behind Raby’s Oriental Ceramics Collection

17th February 2021

Raby Castle regularly hosts research placements for students who are training for careers in heritage and curation. Despite the challenges of the past 12 months this tradition continued during 2020, albeit virtually, and we are delighted to share some of the fascinating stories about Raby’s oriental ceramic collection which were uncovered by a group of […]

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Behind the Scenes – The Octagon Drawing Room at Raby Castle

8th February 2021

Each year during the winter months, many historic buildings close their doors to visitors. Raby Castle is no exception and after a busy festive period, the castle closes before opening again in the spring. Although the doors may be closed, this period is anything but quiet for the castle team, as work to care for […]

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The Tale of the Old Hell-Cat of Raby

1st February 2021

In the early 18th-century an almighty family feud almost destroyed one of Durham’s best-loved castles. Christopher Vane, 1st Baron Barnard of Raby Castle, was said to be a quiet, book-loving man who liked his estates to be run in good order. He married Lady Elizabeth Holles, the eldest daughter of Gilbert Holles, Earl of Clare. […]

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Whatever Happened to Raby’s ‘Museum of Natural History’?

24th November 2020

  Visitors today might think of Raby Castle as a ‘museum’, but this is not the only time in its history where it has been considered as such. In the first half of the 19th century, Elizabeth (c.1777-1861)—the second wife to the 1st Duke of Cleveland (1766-1842)—compiled at Raby ‘a most curious Museum of Natural […]

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Favourite Things: Grand Painting with a Modern Message

12th October 2020

As we continue our Favourite Things series, Senior Guide Keith Simpson shares his fascination with one of the most dramatic paintings in the Castle, ‘Marcus Curtius Leaping into the Gulf’ by Luca Giordano. This imposing piece of art takes pride of place in the dining room, where distinguished guests would have been entertained. Keith says: […]

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Our Favourite Things: A Personal Look at Raby’s Collections

5th October 2020

Raby Castle is home to an incredible collection of art, artefacts and antiques which have been curated and cared for over many centuries. Everyone who is part of the Raby family, whether staff or volunteer, has their own favourite and over the coming weeks they will be introducing these to you on our blog and […]

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‘Hillocks of Stone’; The towers of Raby Castle

10th August 2020

 “One feels as if these forked cliffs of stone had something of the solemnity of a mountain top, in remembering the hundreds of years they have towered above the country, and stood unshaken as the wind howled and raved around them”. Handbook for Raby Castle, 4th Duchess of Cleveland (1870)   For many visitors one […]

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Raby’s Surprising Connections with Puritan New England

1st July 2020

Back in the 1600’s a young and adventurous Henry Vane, ancestor of Raby Castle’s current Lord Barnard, emigrated to join the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Our curator Julie Biddlecombe-Brown reveals who he was, why he went and what happened next. First, a bit of background about the Vane family at the time In 1626 Henry Vane […]

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Feature Fridays with Historic Houses

11th June 2020

We are delighted to be involved in a fantastic initiative by Historic Houses which is showcasing some of the intriguing features of the nation’s heritage properties. Feature Fridays takes a different theme each week and explores some of the unique characteristics of buildings up and down the country, along with the fascinating stories behind them. […]

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