Middleham Castle

Middleham Castle - omdömen

Middleham Castle
10:00 - 16:00
10:00 - 16:00
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Patrick W
4 inlägg
Worth stopping to visit
okt. 2021 • Par
A ruined castle with plenty to see. The childhood home of Richard III. A very friendly welcome in site, children would love it too as it looks and feels like a castle even though its a ruin .
Skriftlig 29 oktober 2021
Detta är ett subjektivt omdöme av en medlem i Tripadvisor och inte av TripAdvisor LLC.

Carol B
Birmingham, UK5 062 inlägg
aug. 2021
Saturday 21 August 2021, went to visit Middleham castle which is under the care of The English Heritage. I took some wonderful photos of the castle and surrounding areas. Middleham castle also has an interesting history.

There are no written records for a castle at Middleham until 1216. However, remains of an early castle survive to the south of the present castle, on the site known as William’s Hill. This castle consisted of timber buildings surrounded by a ringwork (a circular earthwork). The ringwork was protected with timber defences and surrounded by a deep ditch, which survives, partly water-filled. A bailey, or enclosure, stood beyond the ditch on its south side.

The present castle was begun in the late 12th century. The great tower or keep was built in 1170. A tower was added to the east side of the keep in the first half of the 13th century with a chapel on its top floor.

In 1258 Mary fitz Ranulph, known as the ‘Lady of Middleham’, inherited the castle. In 1260 she married Robert Neville, and so the castle passed into the Neville family. The Neville’s rose to become one of the most powerful families in England, and held the castle until the late 15th century.

In 1271 Robert and Mary’s son, Ranulph, 3rd Baron Neville, inherited Middleham, along with the nearby estates of Sheriff Hutton, Brancepeth and Raby. It was Ranulph who built the curtain wall that surrounds the keep in the early 14th century.

Little other work seems to have taken place at Middleham in this period. John, 5th Baron Neville, concentrated instead on transforming Raby Castle and building a new castle at Sheriff Hutton.

John’s eldest son Ralph, 1st Earl of Westmorland, inherited Middleham in 1388, and started to improve the facilities. In 1388 he granted a weekly market and annual fair to the town.

Work on the castle began in 1397 and focused on better accommodation and more latrines. The curtain wall was raised to create first floor ranges on three sides, its towers we heightened and the north east tower was converted to become the castles main gatehouse. In 1410 Henry stayed at Middleham while on progress in the north.

The Neville family was at its most prominent in the mid-15th century under Richard, Earl of Warwick. During the conflict known as the Wars of the Roses (1455–85), Warwick was instrumental in Yorkist Edward, Earl of March, taking the throne from Lancastrian Henry VI in 1461, earning him the title ‘the Kingmaker’.

Edward IV stayed with Warwick at Middleham for a few days in 1461, and in 1464 several defeated Lancastrians were executed at the castle. But by 1469 Warwick had risen in rebellion against Edward, dissatisfied with royal policy. Edward was captured and briefly held at Middleham Castle in August 1469. He later fled to France, returning in 1471 to put down Warwick’s rebellion. The campaign culminated later that year in the Battle of Barnet, at which Edward defeated the Lancastrians and Warwick was killed.

On the accession of Edward IV in 1461, his younger brother Richard, was made Duke of Gloucester. In 1465, at the age of 13, Richard entered Warwick’s household at Middleham remaining there until 1468.

Following Warwick’s death in 1471, Richard acquired the Neville lands in the north, including Middleham. His position was enhanced further through his marriage to Anne Neville, Warwick’s younger daughter, and his appointment as president of the Council of the North. Their son, Edward was born at Middleham in 1474.

Richard became Protector of the Realm upon Edward IV’s death in 1483. Later that year he was crowned Richard III, usurping his 12 year old nephew, Edward V. Richard continued to spend time at Middleham, staying there for several days in 1484 after his son Edward died at the castle.

Richard was defeated by Henry Tudor in 1485 at the Battle of Bosworth. Upon Henry’s accession to the throne Middleham became the possession of the Crown. Some money was spent on the castle’s upkeep in 1531, when a new key and lock were provided for the gatehouse. The auditor’s room on the first floor next to the gatehouse was repaired and glazed, and additional service buildings were inserted along the south and west ranges.

By 1538, however, the castle was in a sorry state. A Crown survey reported that the battlements, roofs and chimneys were in a poor condition, the gatehouse had no portcullis, the chapel and south curtain wall were covered in ivy, and the brew house had decayed. Buildings in the outer bailey were also in decay.

In 1604 James I sold Middleham castle to Sir Henry Lindley, whose family owned it until 1643, when it passed by marriage to the Loftus family. In 1647, during the Civil War, Parliment ordered the destruction of the castle to prevent it being taken by Royalists, but the order was never carried out.

After the restoration of Charles II in 1660, Middleham was brought by the Wood family of Littleton in Middlesex. The castle was leased out for industrial and farming use. In 1779 during the American Wars of Independance, the Office of Commissioners asked Thomas Wood if the castle was fit to hold French prisoners of war, but no documentation shows its use as a prison.

In 1889 the Woods sold Middleham to Samuel Cunliffe Lister, later Baron Masham. By this time the British Archaeological Association had raised concerns about the castle’s condition. The lower few feet of stone of the keep’s latrine towers had been removed for buildings in the town, leaving them hanging in the air. In 1897 the 2nd Lord Masham began to conserve the castle, commissioning the Yorkshire architect Walter Brierley to make the repairs. Date stones from 1906 with the letter ‘M’ marking this work can be seen in the latrine towers. In 1926 the Cunliffe Listers placed Middleham in the guardianship of the Office of Works (now the English Heritage), and it was gifted to the State in 1930.

This is a wonderful castle and well worth visiting if you are in the area.
Skriftlig 23 september 2021
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Andrew H
Leamington Spa, UK1 163 inlägg
Something of a "must see"
sep. 2021
With such an important place in history, Middleham Castle is somewhere I'd long wished to visit & was not disappointed. The ruins are substantial & most impressive. What is strange is how low key it all is considering its status. There is no English Heritage parking: you park in the picturesque town square which must be potentially a problem in peak seasons. There are also no lavatories which is strange for such a large site. Bizarrely there was only a single member of staff: most strange, though she was extremely helpful and pleasant. There is a small exhibition & good information signage throughout, telling Middleham's story. Generally the effect is more tasteful than some of English Heritage's more over commercialised properties, but it was still surprising to see such a light touch. The climb to the top of the keep gives a great view over the horse training town of Middleham & beyond. Well worth a visit.
Skriftlig 11 september 2021
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John B
Stockton-on-Tees, UK395 inlägg
Pleasant couple of hours
aug. 2021
An interesting, very old, ruined castle dating back to 1100s. Although a ruin and relatively small castle, you get a good insight into how it was constructed and what life was like back in the day. We received a nice welcome from the guide who gave a good overview of the best route to take and what to look out for. There are activities/castle related toys for children and a few picnic tables dotted about the ruins encouraging visitors to 'make a day of it' if they want to. A climb up the spiral staircase leads to a nice view of the surrounding countryside and an overhead look at some of the many racing stables at work.
Skriftlig 30 augusti 2021
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Beverley, UK69 inlägg
A lovely walk round a historic castle
juli 2021
A very nice walk round the ruins on a nice sunny summers day - excellent views from the top of the castle over Wensleydale.

As per other comments an audio guide would really enhance the tour, pointing out those little known facts and features that often get missed.
Skriftlig 24 augusti 2021
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Good village views
aug. 2021 • Par
I hope the signs will now be replaced and/or repaired to give clearer information, without needing to buy the guide book.
Skriftlig 24 augusti 2021
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Swadlincote, UK253 inlägg
Well worth a visit - great views
aug. 2021 • Familj
Visited Middleham on a summer Sunday afternoon. Parked in the nearby village centre but was lucky to get a space.

The castle is a short walk away. The welcome was warm from the lady who was clearly knowledgeable and passionate about the castle. We bought a guide book as they are quite an interesting read and useful for historical fact but also had a point of reference during the visit. It looked like there were some activities for younger children outside the well stocked shop too.

There is enough of the castle to enjoy great views, take some nice photos and imagine what it would have been like. It’s also a nice peaceful place to have a picnic or ice cream and relax.

It’s a shame that one of the staircases is out of use at the moment. There are a few information boards which are informative around the castle but I wonder whether an audio tour like the one at the similarly sized Ashby castle could really enhance the visit.
Skriftlig 24 augusti 2021
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Scunthorpe, UK1 197 inlägg
Interesting ruined castle
sep. 2020 • Par
One of many castles in the area. This one is ruined but has many walls left, so you can see what it would have been like.
Although there are information book ahead.
Skriftlig 23 augusti 2021
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Bradwell on Sea, UK13 inlägg
Expensive, little information
aug. 2021 • Par
Very professional and friendly lady at the entrance. The £7.50 entrance fee is in my opinion expensive, considering you also need to purchase a guide book due to their being little information around the castle.
The previous day we visited Bolton castle for the same ticket price, which included a basic information sheet with endless interesting information boards at every section of the visit, plus a falconry and archery display, beautiful gardens included in the price and a great little cafe.
Middleham castle is fine for what it is, but a £4.00 max entrance fee would be more appropriate.
Skriftlig 14 augusti 2021
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sarah l
Doncaster, UK481 inlägg
Fab history in Middleham
aug. 2021
I have been visiting Middleham for 40 years and never tire of it’s beauty.
Used to stay in West end cottage and recently at the Priory guesthouse to se the stunning view of the castle. Steeped in history and is a beautiful backdrop for the race horses walking up to Middleham moor to the gallops.
Definitely worth a visit.
Skriftlig 5 augusti 2021
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