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Last Updated: Saturday, 22 October 2005, 10:45 GMT 11:45 UK
Queen buys gunpowder plot estate
The country estate where it is thought Guy Fawkes plotted to blow up King James I has been bought by the Queen.

The Crown Estate, which manages the Monarch's property interests, has bought Ashby St Ledgers estate in Northamptonshire for close to 10m.

The 2,337 acre estate was the ancestral home of Robert Catesby, the leader of the Gunpowder Plot.

It is 400 years since the 1605 plot to blow up the king whilst he was inside Parliament was foiled.

Catholic persecution

It was at the estate that Catesby is thought to have devised the Gunpowder Plot, storing arms and gunpowder ready for 5 November.

The devout Catesby recruited fellow plotters, including Guy Fawkes, for his abortive campaign after years of persecution of Catholics by the monarchy.

Christopher Bourchier, the director of the Rural Estate, said: "The Crown Estate is committed to remaining a long-term rural land owner.

"The diverse Ashby St Ledgers estate represents the type of deal that will deliver good long-term performance potential."

Today it features an organic dairy farm, woodland, 11 residential properties and a game business marketing under the "Ashby St Ledgers" brand.



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