Horsford Castle Hill

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

There are earthwork remains

NameHorsford Castle Hill
Alternative NamesCastle Yards; Horsforth
Historic CountryNorfolk
Modern AuthorityNorfolk
1974 AuthorityNorfolk
Civil ParishHorsford

Motte and Bailey castle; decayed soon after 1431. Known as Castle Hill or Castle Yards. Circular ditched motte with circular bailey to south. Motte not appreciably higher than bailey bank now. Damaged by ploughing in recent years. Aerial photographs suggest a stone keep on motte (?C12) and perhaps barbican between motte and bailey. Some C14 antiquities found. Liddiard interprets the castle as the Malet's hunting ground - a country retreat on the periphery of their estates - or a castle raised for their tenant Waller of Caen. (Norfolk HER)

The motte, which as been considerably mutilated particularly on the N and S sides, measures overall 77.0m. to 85.0m in diameter by 2.3m in height above the ditch which is now for the most part dry. The bailey which lies on the S side, is the best preserved aspect of the feature. It encloses an area 72.0m E to W by 32.0m. transversely within a substantial bank and dry ditch (Field Investigators Comments–F2 RD 20-FEB-81). (PastScape)

Gatehouse Comments

Apparently the suggestion on a square keep on the motte came from Pevsner but is not otherwise supported although there other reports of possible masonry.

- 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 ReferenceTG205156
Latitude52.6940498352051
Longitude1.26209998130798
Eastings620540
Northings315660
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink
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Copyright Ashley Dace and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons license.
Copyright Ashley Dace and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons license.
Copyright Ashley Dace and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons license.
Copyright Ashley Dace and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons license.
Copyright Ashley Dace and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons license.
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Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
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Books

  • Liddiard, Robert, 2005, 'The Castle Landscape of Anglo-Norman East Anglia: A Regional Perspective' in Harper-Bill, C. (ed), Medieval East Anglia (Woodbridge, Boydell) p. 33-51
  • Cushion, B. and Davison, A., 2003, Earthworks of Norfolk (Dereham: East Anglian Archaeology 104) p. 170-1 (plan)
  • 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. 58
  • Liddiard, R., 2000, Landscapes of Lordship (British Archaeological Reports British Series 309) p. 35-6, 85-8
  • Pettifer, A., 1995, English Castles, A guide by counties (Woodbridge: Boydell Press) p. 164 (slight)
  • Rogerson, Andrew, 1994, 'Castles' in Wade-Martins, P, (ed), An Historical Atlas of Norfolk (2edn Norwich; Norfolk Museums) p. 68-9
  • Margeson, S., Seiller, F. and Rogerson, A., 1994, The Normans in Norfolk (Norfolk Museums Service) p. 30
  • Wade-Martins, P. (ed), 1987, Norfolk From The Air Vol. 1 (Norfolk Museums Service) p. 29
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2 p. 307
  • Fry, P.S., 1980, Castles of the British Isles (David and Charles) p. 245
  • Wilton, J.W., 1979, Earthworks and Fortifications of Norfolk (Weathercock Press) p. 23
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus, 1962, Buildings of England: Norwich and north-east Norfolk (Penguin) p. 171
  • Clarke, R.R., 1960, East Anglia Vol. 2 (London Press) p. 233 plate 58
  • 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. 301-2 online copy
  • Blomefield, F., 1809, ''Taverham Hundred: Horseford' An Essay towards a Topographical History of the County of Norfolk Vol. 10 p. 432-37 (tenurial history) online transcription

Antiquarian

Journals

  • Liddiard, Robert, 2006, 'Early castles in the Medieval Landscape of East Anglia' Château Gaillard Vol. 22 p. 243-50
  • Barrett-Lennard, T., 1904, 'Some Account of the Manor or Castle of Horsford' Norfolk Archaeology Vol. 15 p. 267-93 (mainly manorial history) online copy