Eleanor was born at Windsor castle about 18 June 1269, the eldest surviving daughter of Edward I 'Longshanks', king of England, and his first wife Eleanor of Castile, comtesse de Ponthieu.
What evidence exists for Eleanor's early years suggest that, while her parents were absent on Crusade between 1270 and 1274, she became very close to her paternal grandmother Eleanor de Provence, with whom she continued to spend a good deal of time. She was also close to her sickly brother Henry. On one Pentecost Eve, Henry and Eleanor were given two partridges for their dinner, for a special treat.
For a long period Eleanor was betrothed to Alfonso III 'the Liberal', king of Aragón. Alfonso's parents were under papal interdict, however, because of their claims to the throne of Sicily, which were contrary to the papal donation of the Sicilian throne to Charles I Etienne, king of Naples and Sicily, and despite the Aragónese ruler's repeated pleas that Edward I send his daughter to them for marriage, Edward refused to send her as long as the interdict remained in place. In 1282 he declined one such request by saying that his wife and mother felt that the girl, who had just turned 13, was too young to be married, and that they wanted to wait another two years before sending her to Aragón. Alfonso died before the marriage could take place.
On 20 September 1293 at Bristol, Eleanor married Henri III, comte de Bar, son of Thibaud II, comte de Bar, and his second wife Jeanne de Toucy. Eleanor's marriage to Henri made King Philippe 'le Bel' of France distrustful of him. Eleanor and Henri had at least two children, Edouard I who would have progeny, and Jeanne.
Eleanor died on 29 August 1298. She was buried in Westminster Abbey.