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INSIGHTS Virtual Lectures: Lions of the North – the Percys and Alnwick Castle – 1000 years of history by Ralph Percy

Ralph Percy, 12th Duke of Northumberland

Date/Time: Tuesday 17 November 2020, 17:30 - 18:15

Hosted by Professor Sally Shortall, with introduction from Professor Anya Hurlbert

Throughout the last millennium, the Percys have played pivotal roles in British history suffering imprisonment, death in battle and execution along the way. The story of Alnwick Castle, their stronghold, is equally remarkable. A Medieval fortress, warfare had left it virtually derelict by the end of the 17th Century, but it re-emerged in the 18th Century as a palatial family residence and the focus for a
large, thriving estate that remains to this day, generating revenue to restore and preserve that heritage and benefiting the local community and economy.

This lecture is based on Ralph Percy's recent book Lions of the North: The Percys & Alnwick Castle. A thousand years of history, available to buy now from the Alnwick Castle Online Shop.


Ralph Percy was born in Alnwick Castle in 1956, the fifth of seven children and only the second to be born there in 100 years. Educated at Eton College, Christchurch College Oxford (studying History) and Reading University (studying land management), he is a qualified Chartered Surveyor. Ralph married Jane in 1979 and they have four children and several dogs. He inherited Alnwick Castle and Estate from his elder brother, Harry, who died in 1995 and has have lived there ever since.

Live Q&A:

The lecture will be followed by a live Q&A with the speaker. You can submit a question in advance by sending an email to or during the event using YouTube Live Chat or via Twitter @InsightsNCL.

This event will be hosted on YouTube, registration is not required.