Chillingham Castle

Has been described as a Certain Masonry Castle

There are major building remains

NameChillingham Castle
Alternative NamesChevelyngham; Chelynggam; Chauelingham; Chevelingham
Historic CountryNorthumberland
Modern AuthorityNorthumberland
1974 AuthorityNorthumberland
Civil ParishChillingham

Castle. C14 with C17, C18 and C19 alterations. John Patterson and Sir Jeffrey Wyatville did work in early C19. Mostly dressed stone. Quadrilateral with 4 corner towers and linking ranges. Central courtyard. Late C19 service wing to left. Entrance front has 3-bay centre which is of basement and 3 storeys, flanked by higher towers with still higher turrets. Steps to projecting early C17 centre piece with paired Tuscan columns on all 3 floors, framing, on ground floor, round- headed doorway with moulded imposts, arch; and responds, and on 1st and 2nd floors, 2 renewed cross windows with another Tuscan column between them. Renewed cross windows left and right of centrepiece on 2 upper floors. Slit windows on ground floor. Frieze and cornice above each floor, blank arches on first two friezes, lozenges above 2nd floor. Achievement of arms above top window;and 4 beasts with shields stand in frontof embattled parapet. Sashes under hoodmould in towers. In courtyard, early C17 two-storey addition; possibly rebuilt open arcade on ground floor of segmental arches on square piers with small attached Ionic columns. 6 statues of Worthies on corbels above the piers: Staircase to 1st floor. Balcony on 2nd floor.

Interior: Tunnel-vaulted basements to towers and ranges. Newel stairs in towers. Early C17 ceiling with pendants, two elaborate C17 overmantel and a fine early C18 white marble fireplace with satyr heads. Interior in poor repair. (Listed Building Report)

A manor house had been built at Chillingham before mid 13c and transformed into a castle in 1344-8; existing buildings preserve the general character though with many alterations and additions. The plan is a rectangle, the buildings being grouped around the four sides of an open courtyard, their outer sides forming a curtain wall, with a square tower at each corner of the structure. The castle was besieged and damaged by rebels during the Pilgrimage of Grace (1536-7)

Major alterations were made at the beginning of the 17c when a walled forecourt was built on the N side and further alterations occurred c 1753 and 19c. (St Joseph 1950; Hunter Blair 1938)

The manor House was probably built by Robert de Muschamp III who died AD 125, in 1344 licence to strengthen it with a stone wall, to crennellate it and to make it into a castle, was granted. Certain parts of the masonry in the curtain walls and lower parts of the towers are probably of this date (Dodds 1935).

The castle is situated upon a NW-facing slope, with higher ground to the S, a ravine to the E, with higher ground beyond, and gentle slopes to the N and W, covered by extensive ornamental grounds. The castle is composed of a rectangle of buildings with four massive corner towers, as described in T2, mostly 14th-16th century work, but the N front, with the exception of the NE tower and part of the NW tower is of 17th century work. A range of domestic buildings grouped along the E face, are of 19th century work, but they are castellated and of pseudo-Norman design. The S face appears to be in its original state, though casement windows have been inserted in recent years. On each side of the drive before the main N entrance are two walls splayed outwards, castellated and probably of 19th century date. They replace the forecourt of the 17th century (F1 ASP 30-NOV-55). (PastScape)

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 ReferenceNU061257
Latitude55.5258483886719
Longitude-1.90424001216888
Eastings406150
Northings625790
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Photo by Philip Davis All Rights Reserved
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Books

  • Goodall, John, 2011, The English Castle 1066-1650 (Yale University Press) p. 261, 472
  • Geldard, Ed, 2009, Northumberland Strongholds (London: Frances Lincoln) p. 62
  • Dodds, John F., 1999, Bastions and Belligerents (Newcastle upon Tyne: Keepdate Publishing) p. 101-4
  • Salter, Mike, 1997, The Castles and Tower Houses of Northumberland (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 34-5
  • Emery, Anthony, 1996, Greater Medieval Houses of England and Wales Vol. 1 Northern England (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press) p. 65-7, 159
  • Pettifer, A., 1995, English Castles, A guide by counties (Woodbridge: Boydell Press) p. 179
  • Graham, Frank, 1993, Northumberian Castles Aln, Tweed and Till (Butler Publishing) p. 7-11
  • Jackson, M.J.,1992, Castles of Northumbria (Carlisle) p. 45-6
  • Rowland, T.H., 1987 (reprint1994), Medieval Castles, Towers, Peles and Bastles of Northumberland (Sandhill Press) p. 6, 9, 29-32, 74
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2 p. 330
  • Fry, P.S., 1980, Castles of the British Isles (David and Charles) Vol. 2 p. 208
  • Graham, Frank, 1976, The Castles of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Frank Graham) p. 102-5
  • Hedley, W. Percy, 1968-70, Northumberland Families Vol. 1 p. 102; Vol. 2 p. 245-6
  • Long, B., 1967, Castles of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) p. 82-3
  • Pevsner, N., 1957, Buildings of England: Northumberland (London, Penguin) p. 124-6
  • Hugill, R.,1939, Borderland Castles and Peles (1970 Reprint by Frank Graham) p. 68-70
  • Dodds, Madeleine Hope (ed), 1935, Northumberland County History (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) Vol. 14 p. 323-46
  • 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. 2 p. 372-3 online copy
  • Bates, C.J., 1891, Border Holds of Northumberland (London and Newcastle: Andrew Reid) p. 9, 14, 23, 41-2, 297-301 (Also published as the whole of volume 14 (series 2) of Archaeologia Aeliana view online)
  • Turner, T.H. and Parker, J.H., 1859, Some account of Domestic Architecture in England (Oxford) Vol. 3 Part 2 p. 413 online copy
  • Hutchinson, Wm, 1776, A View of Northumberland (Newcastle) Vol. 1 p. 237-9 online transcription

Antiquarian

  • Camden, Wm, 1607, Britannia hypertext critical edition by Dana F. Sutton (2004)
  • Chandler, John, 1993, John Leland's Itinerary: travels in Tudor England (Sutton Publishing) p. 343
  • Toulmin-Smith, Lucy (ed), 1910, The itinerary of John Leland in or about the years 1535-1543 (London: Bell and Sons) Vol. 5 p. 64, 66 online copy

Journals

  • King, Andy, 2007, 'Fortress and fashion statements: gentry castles in fourteenth-century Northumberland' Journal of Medieval History Vol. 33 p. 377, 378, 389
  • Musson, J., 2004, 'Chillingham Castle, Northumberland' Country Life Vol. 198.17 p. 130-35
  • 2000-2001, Chillingham Castle' Castle Studies Group Newsletter No. 14 p. 23-24 online copy
  • 14-6-1986, Newcastle Journal p. 7
  • 10-11-1981, Newcastle Journal
  • St Joseph, J.K., 1950, 'Castles of Northumberland from the air' Archaeologia Aeliana (ser4) Vol. 28 p. 7-17 esp 15-16
  • Hunter Blair, C.H., 1940-46, History of the Berwickshire Naturalists Club Vol. 30 p. 38-9
  • Tipping, A., 1913, Country Life Vol. 33 p. 346-55
  • Bates, C.J., 1891, 'Border Holds of Northumberland' Archaeologia Aeliana (ser2) Vol. 14 p. 9, 14, 23, 41-2, 297-301 online copy

Guide Books

  • (Humphry Wakefield), nd, Chillingham Castle_

Primary Sources

  • 1541, View of the Castles, Towers, Barmekyns and Fortresses of the Frontier of the East and Middle Marches Survey of the East and Middle Marches
  • 1509, Holdis and Towneshyppes too lay in Garnysons of horsmen Survey of Tevedale
  • 1415, Nomina Castrorum et Fortaliciorum infra Comitatum Northumbrie online transcription
  • Maxwell Lyte, H.C. (ed), 1902, Calendar of Patent Rolls Edward III (1343-45) Vol. 6 p. 191 online copy
  • Rickard, John, 2002, The Castle Community. The Personnel of English and Welsh Castles, 1272-1422 (Boydell Press) (lists sources for 1272-1422) p. 354-5