Situated on a high ridge overlooking the Kent River, half a mile to the E of Kendal and the main road N from Lancashire.
The castle has been ruinous for centuries but the dry ditch of the moat and sections of the curtain wall, with 4 towers and a rectangular keep, remain on a circular mound.
Entrance was via a gatehouse on the N side.
A possible performance venue. Although household accounts for the Parr residences do not survive, there is evidence that William Parr, 1st Marquess of Northampton, patronized players who toured elsewhere. It is possible that they performed at Kendal for their lord.
Ruin (with 20th c. repairs) is open to the public daily.
ca. 1184 Erected probably by Gilbert, son of Roger fitz Reinford.
1215 Forfeited to King John after the barons' rebellion.
1241 Restored to William de Lancaster III.
14th c. Passed by marriage to the de Roos family.
1383 Passed by marriage to the Parr family.
1550s William Parr's Kendal estates forfeited to the Crown during his disgrace but restored soon after.
1566 Castle abandoned.
ca. 1572 Estate passed to the Crown.
late 16th/early 17th c. Ownership obscure.
1667 Sir Francis Anderton acquired the castle from Henry Herbert, Marquess of Worcester.
18th/19th c. Ruinous castle sold to several owners in succession.
1897 Sold to Kendal Corporation by Lady Henry Bentinck and opened to the public.
REED Cambridge 1.173