Tucked away in a deep wooded valley, Berry Pomeroy Castle is the perfect romantic ruin. It was originally built in the 15th-century by the Pomeroy family, then later expanded by the Seymours, who planned to set a great Elizabethan mansion within the castle’s medieval walls.
Lord Seymour probably began his mansion when summoned to Queen Elizabeth I’s court. It was intended to become the most spectacular house in Devon, with the magnificent north wing and its now-vanished long gallery among the biggest ever built in England. But the overambitious project foundered for lack of funds, and the mansion was left unfinished.
After lying abandoned for a hundred years, the picturesque Berry Pomeroy Castle became a magnet for artists and sightseers in the late 18th-century. Visitors came to marvel at the ruins and speculate about their supposedly sinister history. Its romantic atmosphere fostered tales of hauntings and ghostly apparitions, and some of these stories are retold today through the audio tour.