Lindisfarne Castle

Has been described as a Certain Artillery Fort

There are major building remains

NameLindisfarne Castle
Alternative NamesHoly Island; Holy Iland; Beblow Fort; Belbowe Fort; Biblawe Fort; Beblowe
Historic CountryNorthumberland
Modern AuthorityNorthumberland
1974 AuthorityNorthumberland
Civil ParishHoly Island

Small fort built during the reign of Henry VIII, possibly on the site of an earlier look-out tower. Construction began in 1542 and it was completed in 1550 and was built from the stone of the ruined priory. It was restored in 1902 as a house by Sir Edward Lutyens and given to the National Trust in 1944. (PastScape)

By 1545 3 bulwarks had been built on Holy Island, one of them presumably being on the site of the later castle, or a little to the east of it. A survey of 1561 shows that all that had been built at Beblowe then was a platform on the top with an earth wall, much of which had collapsed. The bulwark was regarded as indefensible. By 1567 a 12 foot high earth wall had been built. The present castle was commenced in 1570 and had an upper court or keep and a lower court. The defensive power was arrayed at the highest elevation to the west, the so-called High battery'. This was walled in ashlar with cannon loops through the battlements. (PastScape ref. HKW)

Castle. C16 converted into house 1902 by Sir Edwin Lutyens for Edward Hudson. Sandstone and whinstone with pantiled roofs. Irregular polygonal plan on 3 levels of former batteries, in dramatic situation. South side has cobbled ramp up to entrance with Tudor-style surround, portcullis and oak door. Scattered fenestration with chamfered mullioned windows under original relieving arches. To right of door a projecting section on original corbels has Lutyen's cruciform arrow slits. Projecting stone water spouts. North side has similar windows and also 3 large round-headed windows with Decorated tracery. Former garderobe tower with pyramidal roof to left. To right, on upper battery, higher building with semi-octagonal end and mullioned windows. Irregular roofs including prominent hipped roof with hipped dormers to middle battery. Tall clustered octagonal chimneys with stepped tops. Interior has several C16 doorways. Also C16 vaulted passages

2 rooms at lowest level have steeply-pointed tunnel vaults. Other features by Lutyens, including entrance hall with round piers and segmental arches dying into imposts; many fireplaces in Tudor style, panelling and doors with characteristic latches, moulded beams and decorative brick floors. (Listed Building Report)

Not scheduled

This is a Grade 1 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 ReferenceNU136417
Latitude55.6690406799316
Longitude-1.78471994400024
Eastings413630
Northings641750
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink
Photograph by Andrew Herrett. All rights reservedView full Sized Image
Photo by Philip Davis. All Rights Reserved

Laitude 55° 40' 7.82" Longitude -1° 47' 5.45"

View full Sized Image

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Books

  • Beckensall, Stan, 2010, Coastal Castles of Northumberland (Amberley) p. 10-12, 47-64
  • Dodds, John F., 1999, Bastions and Belligerents (Newcastle upon Tyne: Keepdate Publishing) p. 55-7
  • Salter, Mike, 1997, The Castles and Tower Houses of Northumberland (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 74-5
  • Pettifer, A., 1995, English Castles, A guide by counties (Woodbridge: Boydell Press) p. 189-90
  • Jackson, M.J.,1992, Castles of Northumbria (Carlisle) p. 78-81 (plan)
  • Geldard, Ed, 2009, Northumberland Strongholds (London: Frances Lincoln) p. 78
  • Pevsner, N., 1992 (revised by Grundy, John et al), Buildings of England: Northumberland (London, Penguin) p. 339-40
  • Saunders, A.D., 1989, Fortress Britain: artillery fortification in the British Isles and Ireland (Liphook: Beaufort Publishing)
  • Furtado, Peter et al (eds), 1988, Ordnance Survey guide to castles in Britain (London) p. 186-7
  • Rowland, T.H., 1987 (reprint1994), Medieval Castles, Towers, Peles and Bastles of Northumberland (Sandhill Press) p. 10, 23
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2 p. 336
  • Colvin, H.M., Ransome, D.R. and Summerson, John, 1982, The history of the King's Works Vol. 4: 1485-1660 (part 2) (London) p. 674-9
  • Fry, P.S., 1980, Castles of the British Isles (David and Charles) p. 244
  • Girouard, Mark, 1979, Historic Houses of Britain (Artus) (1984edn by Perage Books) p. 179-84
  • Graham, Frank, 1976, The Castles of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Frank Graham) p. 207-13
  • Hedley, W. Percy, 1968-70, Northumberland Families Vol. 1 p. 47
  • Long, B., 1967, Castles of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) p. 123
  • Addleshaw, 1957, Holy Island (Sunderland) p. 26-8
  • Hugill, R.,1939, Borderland Castles and Peles (1970 Reprint by Frank Graham) p. 149-52
  • Morris, J.E. 1916, Northumberland (London) p. 213-4
  • Hodgson, J.C. (ed), 1914, North Country Diaries. Vol. II (Surtees Society 124) p. 23 online copy
  • Harvey, Alfred, 1911, Castles and Walled Towns of England (London: Methuen and Co)
  • Hodgson, J.C. (ed), 1910, Six North Country Diaries. Vol. I (Surtees Society 118) p. 18-19 online copy
  • Tomlinson, W.W., 1897, Comprehensive Guide to Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) p. 463-4
  • Mackenzie, J.D., 1896, Castles of England; their story and structure (New York: Macmillan) Vol. 2 p. 395 online copy
  • Timbs, J. and Gunn, A., 1872, Abbeys, Castles and Ancient Halls of England and Wales Vol. 3 (London) p. 349-50 online copy
  • Raine, J., 1852, History and Antiquities of North Durham (London) p. 163-8
  • Scott, W., 1814, Border Antiquities of England and Scotland Vol. 2 p. 129-34 online copy
  • Hodgson, J. and Laird, F., 1813, Beauties of England and Wales; Northumberland Vol. 12 p. 231
  • Hutchinson, Wm, 1785-94, The History and Antiquities of the County Palatine of Durham Vol. 3 p. 450 online copy
  • Buck, Samuel and Nathaniel, 1774, Buck's Antiquities (London) Vol. 1 p. 85
  • Grose, Francis, 1785 (new edn orig 1756), Antiquities of England and Wales (London) Vol. 4 p. 93-7
  • Hutchinson, Wm, 1776, A View of Northumberland (Newcastle) Vol. 2 p. 106- online copy

Antiquarian

  • Blakhal, G. 1666, A brieffe narration
  • Brereton, Sir, William, Notes of a journey through Durham and Northumberland in the year 1635 Vol. 3 (Reprints of rare tracts and imprints of antient manuscripts. Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Re-printed by M. A. Richardson, 1844)
  • Camden, Wm, 1607, Britannia hypertext critical edition by Dana F. Sutton (2004)

Journals

  • Aslet, C., 2014 July 9, 'County Life's castle; Lindisfarne Castle, Northumberland, National Trust' County Life p. 58-65
  • 1991-92, Archaeology in Northumberland Vol. 2 p. 17
  • Gray, 1948, History of the Berwickshire Naturalists Club Vol. 31 p. 85, 107-9
  • (Graham, Peter Anderson), 1913 June 07, 'Lindisfarne Castle, Northumberland' Country Life Vol. 33 p. 830-42
  • 1908, Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle-upon-Tyne (ser3) Vol. 3 p. 290-1, 301-11 (history) online copy
  • Astley, 1902, Journal of the British Archaeological Association Vol. 8 p. 193-4 online copy
  • 1895, Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle-upon-Tyne (ser2) Vol. 7 p. 80-2
  • 1882-4, Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle-upon-Tyne (ser2) Vol. 1 p. 241-2
  • 1855-7, Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle-upon-Tyne (ser1) Vol. 1 p. 253-4

Guide Books

  • Cambridge, Eric, 1995, Lindisfarne Priory and Holy Island (London: English Heritage)
  • Orde, Peter, 1986 (rev edn), Lindisfarne Castle Guide Book (National Trust)
  • Gardiner, Rena, 1984, Look at Lindisfarne Castle (National Trust) (Children's guide book)
  • Orde, Peter, 1978, Lindisfarne Castle Guide Book (National Trust)
  • Halpin, Joanna, 1976, Lindisfarne Castle
  • Addleshaw, G.W.O., 1957, Holy Island or Lindisfarne (Sunderland: Vaux and Associated Breweries)

Primary Sources

  • Sir Robert Bowes, 1550, A Book of the State of the Frontiers and Marches betwixt England and Scotland taken from Brit. Mus. Cotton. MS. Titus, F.13, a copy of the original (see Bates, 51, n185). Printed in Hodgson, [pt.3, ii, 187, 205-6 > http://archive.org/stream/historyofnortpt302hodguoft#page/205/mode/1up]

Other

  • Northumberland County Council, 2009, 'Holy Island' Northumberland Extensive Urban Survey doi:10.5284/1000177 [download copy > http://archaeologydataservice.ac.uk/archives/view/northumberland_eus_2011/downloads.cfm?REDSQUIDARCHIVES_7_799BB461-A0C4-488C-B90DF1259EFE2DA8&area=Holy_Island]