Caple Tump, Kings Caple

Has been described as a Certain Timber Castle (Motte), and also as a Certain Masonry Castle

There are earthwork remains

NameCaple Tump, Kings Caple
Alternative NamesCapel Tump
Historic CountryHerefordshire
Modern AuthorityHerefordshire
1974 AuthorityHereford and Worcester
Civil ParishKings Caple

The monument includes the earthwork and buried remains of a motte castle, situated on a low ridge just south of the main road through the village of King's Caple. The earthern motte mound is circular in plan, with a diameter of 35m, and is between 2.5 and 3.5 metres in height. Its low, flat top may suggest an earlier pallisade or shell keep on the motte summit, and there would have been ample room for structures. The castle is situated alongside an earlier Roman road. To the west of a motte, partly encased by the degraded rampart, are the remains of a stone well. (PastScape)

the earthwork and buried remains of a motte castle, situated on a low ridge just south of the main road through the village of King's Caple, and opposite St John's Church. The monument includes an earthen motte mound, circular in plan and with a diameter of 35m. The motte's steep sides rise 3.5m on the north side and 2.5m on the south side, to a flat top with a diameter of roughly 25m. The remains of a low earthen bank around the rim of the summit survive up to 4.5m in width and up to 1m high in places. This bank has been breached in four places where paths have been created on to the top of the mound. Only one of these represents the original access to the motte platform, the remainder are of more modern date. Material for the construction of the mound will have been obtained from a surrounding ditch, traces of which are visible as a slight depression roughly 8m wide on the south east side of the motte. Elsewhere the ditch has become completely infilled, but will survive below ground. (Scheduling Report)

Gatehouse Comments

Phillips writes 'that it was a late construction, probably motivated by land tenure and agricultural holdings.' However in village by church in position suggesting early date.

- 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 ReferenceSO559288
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink
Copyright Philip Halling and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons license.View full Sized Image

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  • Shoesmith, Ron, 2009 (Rev edn.), Castles and Moated Sites of Herefordshire (Logaston Press) p. 189
  • Phillips, Neil, 2005, Earthwork Castles of Gwent and Ergyng AD 1050-1250 (University of Wales) p. 216-17 Download from ADS
  • Salter, Mike, 2000, Castles of Herefordshire and Worcestershire (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 45
  • Stirling-Brown, R., 1989, Herefordshire Castles (privately published) p. 10
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 1 p. 207
  • 1981, Herefordshire Countryside Treasures (Hereford and Worcester County Council) p. 68
  • RCHME, 1932, An inventory of the historical monuments in Herefordshire Vol. 2: east p. 98 No. 2 online transcription


  • 1992, Herefordshire Archaeological News Vol. 58 p. 42
  • Attfield, C E., 1986, Herefordshire Archaeological News Vol. 45 p. 1, 9
  • Hogg, A.H.A. and King, D.J.C., 1963, 'Early castles in Wales and the Marches: a preliminary list' Archaeologia Cambrensis Vol. 112 p. 77-124