Malton is a historic market town situated just north of the river Derwent in North Yorkshire. The building remains date back to 71AD when a Roman auxiliary Fort called Deventio was built on the land and a large civilian settlement developed in the south of the river. The Old Lodge Hotel is situated west of these remains, known locally as ‘Orchard Fields’ on land that was part of Malton Castle. Malton Castle was a wooden castle built in 1138 after the Norman invasion as a temporary measure to occupy the land they had captured and then rebuilt in stone by Eustance De Vescy. It was an important castle in its days and welcomed Richard the Lionheart in 1189, visited by Edward II in 1307 and by Robert the Bruce in 1322 however shortly after the great house of De Vescy fell to ruin along with the castle.
Upon Lord William Eure receiving his title in 1544 he inherited the land. The Eure family had a long history with the area; William’s son Ralph, born in 1510, defended Scarborough Castle against the Pilgrimage of Grace in 1536 and became Warden of the East Marches. He was also involved in the burning of Edinburgh in 1544, famously commemorated in Sir Walter Scott’s poem ‘Lord Eurie’.
In 1569 Raplh, 3rd Lord Eure built a new house on the site where the castle stood, now known as ‘Castle Gardens’. The house was then rebuilt in a much grander style in 1602. This was a spectacular property and is described by the diarist and gunpowder plotter Sir Henry Slingsby rivalling many other great houses including that of Audley End House in Essex. This house was then inherited by Colonel William Eure, a casualty of Marston Moor and eventually by his two daughters Mary and Margaret (Peg and Moll). The rumour spread that the two sisters quarrelled over their inheritance and could not agree on who should live in the property, resulting in the Sherriff Henry Marwood ordering the house to be torn down and then the bricks shared between them in 1674. However a fireplace was rescued depicting the true story; that the sisters didn’t pay their taxes and a cannon was blown through the doors to retrieve the valuable bricks as payment. We believe that the sisters created the rumour of the quarrel so as to preserve the family name.
The Old Lodge is what is left of the original house and the size of the lodge suggests that the original Jacobean Prodigy house would have been quite a substantial property. The Old Lodge has been substantially altered and extended since the purchase of Sir Thomas Wentworth in 1712.