This lavish gatehouse is part of the ruins of Kenilworth Castle. Built by Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester for the visit of Elizabeth I in 1575. Leicester was keen to impress Elizabeth in a final attempt to convince her to marry him, and no expense was spared. Elizabeth brought an entourage of thirty-one barons and four hundred staff for the royal visit that lasted an exceptional nineteen days; twenty horsemen a day arrived at the castle to communicate royal messages. Leicester entertained the Queen and much of the neighbouring region with pageants, fireworks, bear baiting, mystery plays, hunting and lavish banquets. The cost was reputed to have amounted to many thousand pounds, almost bankrupting Leicester, though it probably did not exceed £1,700 in reality. The event was considered a huge success and formed the longest stay at such a property during any of Elizabeth's tours, yet the queen did not decide to marry Leicester.