Fotheringhay Castle was probably founded around 1100 by Simon de Senlis, Earl of Northampton. It was a favoured residence of the Dukes of York, and King Richard III was born here in 1452. It was also the final place of imprisonment of Mary, Queen of Scots, who was tried and executed in the castle in 1587. In the 1630s the castle was dismantled and most of the masonry removed, leaving only the earthworks. Some of the fixtures and fittings ended up at the Talbot Hotel in Oundle. The castle site is protected as a Scheduled Monument and is open to the public.
The castle was said to have been cursed, owing to the series of misfortunes that befell many associated with it. The Scottish Thistles that grow here are known as "Queen Mary's Tears".
For more information, please read Haunted Castles of Britain and Ireland by Richard Jones.