Leasowe Castle Hotel
Moreton, Wirral, Merseyside, CH46 3RF (view map)
The Castle dates back to 1592, and was built by Ferdinand, Earl of Derby, second heir to the English throne, to allow him to watch horse racing on the Meols sands. Ferdinand was a patron of William Shakespeare and Mayor of Liverpool.
The original castle was called ‘New Hall’ and consisted of just a single tower. Further towers, turrets and wings were added later. Over the centuries the Castle has played host to royalty, including members of the Stuart family and King William III, who stayed overnight before leaving for Ireland, an expedition which ended in the Battle of the Boyne in 1690.
The castle then fell into disrepair becoming known as ‘Mock Beggar Hall’. In the 19th century, a new owner Sir Edward Cust made many improvements and renovations including bringing the Star Chamber from the Court at Westminster. He also installed the famous ‘Battle Staircase’ with its plates of famous British battles and commanders set into the rails. After an unsuccessful attempt to run the castle as a hotel, Sir Edward made it his home.
Leasowe was again turned in a hotel in 1891 before it was bought by the trustees of the Railway Convalescence Homes in 1910. It remained a home for retired railway men until 1970, except for a period during World War One when it was used to billet German prisoners of war. For the second time in its history, the castle again fell into disrepair until it was purchased and restored in 1982.
Lawton Hotels Ltd. have owned the Castle since November 2000, since when a programme of sympathetic refurbishment has taken place including new bedrooms, function suites and extensive landscaping.