‘Kingston’ & Kingston Lacy
The heart of the ancient king’s manor at Wimborne can probably be tied to an
earthwork at Abbott Street Copse, which is now part of the Kingston Lacy estate.
A large enclosure, surrounded by banks and palisades contained the important
buildings of the manor, with the king’s hall in the centre -
From within this stronghold a famous scene in history may have been enacted; Æthelwald laid claim to the English Crown on his Uncle’s (Alfred the Great) death in 899. He might have been king earlier when on his father’s death on 871
his uncle, Alfred took the throne as Æthelwald was only a child. -
in 899 Æthelwald claimed the throne, but was beseiged here by his cousin Edward,
and is said to have made defiant boasts, vowing to stay at the manor, alive or dead -
……. instead, he slipped away at night and fled to join the Danes in Northumbria, leaving his followers and the woman he had seized to the mercy of ‘King’ Edward. So, Æthelwald’s rebellion was short-
killed in a battle with the Kentish army in 903 -
There was an earlier manor here that in 1229 was given to John de Lacy -
Sir John Bankes, MP and Lord Chief Justice, bought the Isle of Purbeck, Corfe Castle and the Kingston Lacy estate in 1635-
In 1663, Sir John’s son, Sir Ralph Bankes, commissioned the architect Roger Pratt to design a new family seat on the Kingston Lacy estate. The building and furnishing of Kingston House put Sir Ralph seriously into debt and his son was obliged to lease it to the 1st Duke of Ormonde to save money. In 1693, the family was able to return to Kingston Hall and it remained the residence of the Bankes family until 1981 when it was given to the National Trust, as part of a huge bequest which included Corfe Castle and much of the surrounding land.
William John Bankes (1786-
[some acquired when visiting The Duke of Wellington whilst he was fighting the Spanish Peninsular War (1807–1814)] The Peninsular War was a conflict between Napoleon's empire and Bourbon Spain (assisted by the United Kingdom and its ally, Portugal), for control of the Iberian Peninsula during the Napoleonic Wars. ] He was forced into exile in 1841 due to accusations of improper sexual behaviour.