Woodcroft Castle

Has been described as a Certain Fortified Manor House

There are masonry ruins/remnants remains

NameWoodcroft Castle
Alternative Names
Historic CountryNorthamptonshire and the Soke of Peterborough
Modern AuthorityPeterborough; City of
1974 AuthorityCambridgeshire
Civil ParishEtton

Inhabited fragment of late C13 castle on a moated site, and with additions and alterations. What remains is the west side of the original building with a central gateway and a circular tower at the north end. There was probably a courtyard at the centre and the 3 other sides and the associated corner towers are no longer standing. Ashlar. West front has central 3-storey gateway with wide double-chamfered segmental arched entrance, and flanking 2½ storey 3-bay wings. On the north end is a 3-storey circular corner tower rising from the moat. The tower, gateway and attic storeys have single-light windows with shouldered heads set in chamfered recesses. The rest of the windows are mainly 2-, 3- or 4-light stone mullion windows with straight heads and arched lights. Moulded string courses at floor levels. L-shaped on plan with short early Tudor wing to north-east. Interior: has large medieval fireplace. (Listed Building Report)

Part of a weak stone castle built about 1280, quadrangular in plan with one round tower and a roughly square gatehouse. (King 1983)

Gatehouse Comments

It is probably the west front with two round towers and the square gatehouse were the only completed parts of the fortified manor house and possible that was all that was ever intended, the rest of the quadrangle being occupied by timber buildings. That is this was only ever the public front of this building, which although moated, was hardly fortified. It was, however, still besieged in the Civil War as were many high status house fortified or not.

- Philip Davis

Not scheduled

This is a Grade 2* listed building protected by law

Historic England Scheduled Monument Number
Historic England Listed Building number(s)
Images Of England
Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceTF140045
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  • Lowerre, A.G., 2004, Placing Castles in the Conquest. Landscape, Lordship and Local Politics in the South-Eastern Midlands, 1066-1100 (PhD thesis: Boston College) p. 574
  • Cope-Faulkner P., 2002, Archaeological recording at Woodcroft Castle, Etton, Peterborough Report No 185/02.