Ipswich Castle

Has been described as a Possible Timber Castle (Other/Unknown)

There are no visible remains

NameIpswich Castle
Alternative NamesGipeswic
Historic CountrySuffolk
Modern AuthoritySuffolk
1974 AuthoritySuffolk
Civil ParishIpswich

The site of the castle besieged by Stephen ( William of Newburgh, p. 189 {sic}) is uncertain: earthworks in the Aboretum grounds or the Mount near St Stephens Church have been suggested. (Renn 1973)

Gatehouse Comments

Vanished. Said to have been some kind of castle built after the Conquest, perhaps in the early year's of William I's reign as part of his programme to subdue the country. Matilda's son Henry besieged it in 1152. It was later held against him when Hugh Bigot supported the rebellion of Henry II's sons. That led to Ipswich castle's demolition by Henry II in 1176. For a discussion on the debatable topic of this castles location see Not scheduled

Not Listed

Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceTM165447
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink

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Calculate Print


  • Salter, Mike, 2002, Index and Amendments to Mike Salter's English Castles Books (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 9
  • Salter, Mike, 2001, The Castles of East Anglia (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 80
  • Martin, Edward, 1999 (3edn), 'Medieval Castles' in Dymond, David and Martin, Edward (eds) An Historical Atlas of Suffolk (Lavenham) p. 58-9
  • Wade, Keith, 1999 (3edn), 'Anglo-Saxon and Medieval Ipswich' in Dymond, David and Martin, Edward (eds) An Historical Atlas of Suffolk (Lavenham) p. 158-9
  • Drage, C., 1987, 'Urban castles' in Schofield, J. and Leech, R. (eds) Urban Archaeology in Britain (CBA Research Report 61) p. 117-32 online copy
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2 p. 460
  • Renn, D.F., 1973 (2 edn.), Norman Castles of Britain (London: John Baker) p. 210
  • Harvey, Alfred, 1911, Castles and Walled Towns of England (London: Methuen and Co)
  • Mackenzie, J.D., 1896, Castles of England; their story and structure (New York: Macmillan) Vol. 1 p. 282 online copy



  • West, S.E., 1963, 'Excavations at Cox Lane (1958) and at the Town Defences, Shire Hall Yard, Ipswich (1959). (with reports by G.C. Dunning, R.H.M. Dolley and D. Charman)' Proceedings of the Suffolk Institute of Archaeology and History Vol. 29.3 p. 233 online copy

Primary Sources

  • Howlett, R. (ed), 1884, 'Historia Rerum Anglicarum of William of Newburgh' in Chronicles of the Reigns of Stephen, Henry II, and Richard I (Rolls series 82) Vol. 1 p. 89 online copy


  • Fradley, Michael, 2011, The Old in the New: Urban Castle Imposition in Anglo-Norman England, AD1050-1150 (University of Exeter PhD Thesis) available via EThOS