Page last updated at 19:04 GMT, Friday, 20 November 2009

Henry VIII's love nest for sale

Shurland Hall
The Gatehouse was part of a Tudor courtier's palace

A property where newlywed Henry VIII stayed with his second wife Anne Boleyn has gone on the market after being rebuilt from a state of near collapse.

The gatehouse on the Isle of Sheppey in Kent is all that remains of Shurland Hall, the Tudor palace owned by a courtier of the King, Thomas Cheyney.

It was probably built especially for Henry and Anne's visit, when the King spent three days hunting.

The Spitalfields Trust has restored it and put it up for sale for £2m.

"It is an amazing, unique site which has been occupied since pre-Roman times," said spokesman Oliver Leigh-Wood.

Great hall

The gatehouse had been unoccupied since World War II and was covered in scaffolding when representatives from the Trust first saw it.

It had no walls and no floors, but has been rebuilt into a five-bedroom house with the help of a £300,000 grant from English Heritage.

In the grounds are the fragments of the great hall of the palace, where Henry and Anne were entertained.

"Sir Thomas himself had a staff of at least 100 males - women were unrecorded," said Mr Leigh-Wood.

"Henry would have had a huge retinue, so this palace would have had in excess of 300 or 400 people here at the time of the King's visit."

The family home of the Boleyns was at Hever Castle in Kent.

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Oliver Leigh-Wood describes the gatehouse before it was refurbished



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SEE ALSO
King Henry VIII's Kentish roots
08 Oct 09 |  History

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