Battery at The Castle, Knowle

Has been described as a Rejected Artillery Fort

There are no visible remains

NameBattery at The Castle, Knowle
Alternative Names
Historic CountryDevonshire
Modern AuthorityDevon
1974 AuthorityDevon
Civil ParishBraunton

Said to be an Elizabethan battery, but may have been built in mid 19th century. Consists of a raised platform cut from a rock outcrop at the south end of the earthworks. Terrace constructed in 1850 to house 2 cannons from wreck of HMS Weazle. (Mills, A. 1996) Supposed Elizabethan Battery.

1. Visited 30/09/1953. Local resident remembers Elizabethan type guns standing on this platform. It was a defensive site against the Spanish invasion.

2. Visited 06/10/1953. The site consists of a raised platform, 12 metres north to south and 8 metres east to west, cut from rock outcrop which ends abruptly in the uncut rock face on the north. It is surrounded on three sides by weak mortared walling, to the level of the platform which thus has a vertical drop of average 1.7 metres. The north side has no walling and is the only blind side for elsewhere the site commands a fine view. (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division 1954) Notes on Woollcombe Manuscript seen at Devon and Exeter Institute. Woollcombe visited site, half a mile from Braunton, above confluence of Taw and Torridge, on 24/08/1843. Found no sign of early camp only 'modern' fort with small cannon. Adjacent fields cultivated, possibly banks destroyed. (Unknown 1984). (Devon Historic Environment Record)

The monument includes a slight univallate hillfort situated on prominent ridge overlooking the Caen Valley. The hillfort survives as an oval enclosure measuring up to 165m long by 120m wide internally, defined by a single rampart and buried outer ditch. Within the enclosure on the southern side is a terraced rectangular area defined by mortared masonry which was constructed in 1850 to house two cannons from the wreck of HMS Weasel. (Scheduling Report)

Its origin and purpose are unclear, however it was almost certainly not built as a gun platform. The land is owned by Buckland Barton (SS 43 NE 8) and the stance affords fine views of the house and farm buildings 0.75 km to the SW

It may therefore have been constructed as a viewing platform perhaps in the C19. (PastScape ref. Field Investigators Comments–F2 MJF 23-OCT-89)

Gatehouse Comments

The Castle is a Iron Age hillfort. This can certainly be safely dismissed as an Elizabethan artillery work.

- Philip Davis

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law

Not Listed

Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceSS488382
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink

No photos available. If you can provide pictures please contact Castlefacts

Most of the sites or buildings recorded in this web site are NOT open to the public and permission to visit a site must always be sought from the landowner or tenant.

Calculate Print