Studley Castle history


A rich history... over 180 years of reinventions.

Studley Castle history

Building a dream

Studley Castle is a Grade II* listed building set in 28 acres of countryside in Warwickshire.

The vision of Francis Lyttleton Holyoake, high sheriff of Warwickshire, it was completed in 1836. He had a £120,000 budget - an eye-watering £14.5m today - and enlisted Samuel Beazley, a renowned theatre architect, to design a castle in Gothic Revival style.

For the next 70 years, Studley Castle served as an extraordinary family home. Ultimately, though, such decadent living became a price too high to pay and Francis was declared bankrupt.

Studley Castle history
Turret with scaffolding

Changing times

In 1903, Lady Warwick purchased the building and transformed it into the Studley Agricultural College for Women to provide horticultural training to daughters of the gentry. Requisitioned by the government, it became a training camp for the Women’s Land Army during the First and Second World Wars and remained a women’s-only college for the next 60 or so years.

In 1969, the building gained its Grade II* listing, and after a time as offices and a conference centre, in 2006 it was converted again, this time into a country house hotel.

Studley Castle main building

Looking to the Future

We’ve always been fascinated by buildings of character so when the hotel closed in March 2016 we snapped it up. We began an ambitious £50m renovation and development programme to restore it to its original grandeur.

It still has its eye on the past but is very much a hotel of the here and now. Modern additions complement the original buildings, while ancient facades and features have been skilfully restored and blended with the new.

Studley Castle is Warner’s 14th property and is our landmark hotel. And we can’t wait to show you around.