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The history of the Castle can be traced back to the early 1500's as an early timber framed Tudor dwelling, which was transformed into High Street House in the 1670's. The building went through another major transformation in the early 1800's, when the owner Henry Streatfield, decided to rebuild the house to resemble a medieval castle and commissioned William Atkinson to design the changes. Characteristic of the Castles history, Atkinsons plans were never completed, owing to lack of funds, and the castles transformation was partially finished according to Henry Kendalls design during the 1830s.
The Streatfields did not occupy the castle after 1900 and following a turbulent first part of the 20th Century when the castle was at times a school and military base, the estate was rescued by Denys Bower. In 1955 this passionate and sometimes eccentric collector, bought the castle to display his stunning collections to the public.
Bower's collections include Japanese lacquer, armour and swords as well as a very important collection of Egyptian antiquities, Buddhist artifacts and Jacobean manuscripts and paintings.
Denys died in 1977 leaving his collections to the Nation under the stewardship of a charitable trust.
The Castle with its collections can now be viewed by the public, together with the beautiful unspoilt grounds set around a lake and extending down to the historical village of Chiddingstone.
Chiddingstone Castle can be found off the B2027 near Edenbridge in Kent.