The Great Severndroog Timeline

Severndroog Castle was built as a memorial to Sir William James. His widow, Lady James, wanted to celebrate his most famous exploit when he destroyed the fleet and stronghold of 'pirates' on the island fortress Survarnadurg (Severndroog), India in 1755.


Sir William James

1722 - 83

Lady Anne James

1742 - 98


Severndroog Castle is built, just a year after William James's death, on Shooter's Hill in the parish of Eltham.


Severndroog Castle is used as a surveying point for the detailed mapping of England.


Lady James dies and is buried in the family vault at St John's Churchyard, Eltham.

c. 1816

Mr John Blades, ex-sheriff of London, purchases the Castle.


A proposal to build a 10,000 catacomb cemetery in terraces on the site, threatens the castle.


The Royal Engineers use the building for conducting a survey of London.

c. 1869

Mr Barlow, ship owner, leases Castle Wood. He terraces the slopes south of the Castle and builds Castle Wood House, but never lives there.


Mr Thomas Jackson (an eminent railway and docks contractor of Eltham Park) buys the lease and his son lives there until the lease passes to Mr E Probyn Godson. Mr Godson later buys the freehold of the estate, including the Castle.


Mr E Probyn Godson leaves an option to buy the estate to the London County Council (LCC). The property transfers to LCC management in November. Castle Wood House and its outbuildings are demolished but the Castle is kept for 'park purposes'.


The Castle plays an important part in air raid defences for London. Two observers man the tower 24 hours a day.


The Greater London Council (GLC) is abolished and the London Borough of Greenwich takes ownership. The Castle closes to the public.


Greenwich Council proposes to lease the Castle to a property developer. A campaign to keep the Castle for the public begins.


The Severndroog Castle Building Preservation Trust (SCBPT) is set up by local people.


Severndroog Castle appears on the second series of the BBC2 programme "Restoration".


An event at the Castle commemorates the 250th anniversary of the Battle of Severndroog.


The Heritage Lottery Fund agrees to contribute to the restoration of Severndroog Castle.


The restored Castle opens to visitors.

The Severndroog Castle Building Preservation Trust (SCBPT) is a company limited by guarantee (No. 04641883). Registered charity No. 1127071.