Layer Marney Tower
Magnificent Tudor gatehouse in rural Essex countryside.
Colchester, Essex, CO5 9US
The Marney family can definitely be traced here as early as the 12th Century and may well have been here before that. However, it wasn’t until the beginning of the sixteenth century that this extraordinary building was built. The work started in the first half of Henry VIII’s reign, Layer Marney Tower is in many ways the apotheosis of the Tudor Palace. The building is principally the creation of Henry 1st Lord Marney, who died in 1523. His son John died two years later, leaving only two young girls and so the project was never finished.
Layer Marney Tower has always been a family home. It has had 11 family living in it spanning 500 years. Each contributing many stories, times of decline, sometimes of care and love.
It is an unusual, beautiful and dramatic place with a commanding view of the Blackwater Estuary. Because of its location, it has missed many of the damaging eras of British history, which means it still has it’s Effigy Tombs in the Church and the Italianate terracotta on the building.