The History of The Knights Lodge
Tucked away at the edge of the fairly modern town of Corby, lies this historic little gem. Corby was largely formed around the development of the steelworks in the 1930s. Before then, only a small village existed. The Knights Lodge public house has a great deal more history.
Unbeknown to many, The Knights Lodge only became the public house we see today in 1967. Upon arrival, it becomes obvious that the building dates back much further than that, by nearly a thousand years.
In 1066, the land was held by the Abbot of Peterborough as part of the Manor of Cottingham. Henry II (1154-1189) granted 'pasture and herbage' to the Abbot of Pipewell. During these times, the monks used the land to harvest hay and graze cattle.
If we take a leap forward in time, we discover where the name 'The Knights Lodge' may have originated. In 1583, Queen Elizabeth I granted Sir Christopher Hatton 'custody of the Lawn of Benefield' as well as 'the Lawnde Lodge', hence 'the knights lodge'. Six years after Christopher's death in 1591, his cousin inherited the lodge, also named Christopher Hatton. This Christopher was knighted in 1603. We see evidence of this in the stone plaque outside the lodge, inscribed with 'C.H. 1603'
During the Civil War, parts of the land were divided up and let out to people for small scale farming. Such was the success, that assets were extended and 'Beanfield Lodge' became a farmhouse in it's own right.
Tower Hill Road used to be the main road from Kettering to Corby and beyond. In 1643, it would have bore witness to the Parliamentarian troops marching on their journey from Newport Pagnell to seize the Royalist Rockingham Castle.
It is difficult to say exactly how old the building is that stands today. The ornate staircase is believed to be Jacobean and in the roof space, there is evidence of thatch. In the 1950's, the building was listed as Grade II due to the 17th Century features. Luckily, this means we are still able to enjoy the building to this day.