Beaumys Castle

Has been described as a Certain Fortified Manor House

There are earthwork remains

NameBeaumys Castle
Alternative NamesBeaumyss; Beams; Beaumeys
Historic CountryBerkshire
Modern AuthorityWokingham
1974 AuthorityBerkshire
Civil ParishSwallowfield

Manorial site enclosed by a moat. There are no surface indications of the manor house in the wooded area enclosed. A causeway centrally placed across the N.W. side of the moat is probably an original feature. (PastScape)

Gatehouse Comments

The manor had belonged to the Despenser's from the mid C13 but came to Nicholas de la Beche in 1335 who obtained a licence to crenellate in 1338. In April 1347 John de Dalton broke into the castle 'on the sacred day of Good Friday, without reverence for God, Holy Church or the King, and to the terror of the King's son Lionel, who was staying there and the rest of the royal children with him,' and carried off Margery by force (VCH, 1923). The manor was split between three co-heirs in the mid C14 and the house may have ceased to function as a high status residence around this time. Whatever the defences of this house, built by licence or otherwise, they were not substantial enough to stop an attack by a small group of knights, despite the presence of an important nobleman and, presumably, some of his entourage (some of whom were killed). However the house was important enough for Lionel to be there in the first place. Was in the Wiltshire part of the parish of Shinfield, but was moved into Berkshire at a relatively 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 ReferenceSU709646
Latitude51.3762016296387
Longitude-0.98141998052597
Eastings470980
Northings164600
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink
Photograph by Malcolm Butler. All rights reserved
Photograph by Malcolm Butler. All rights reserved
Photograph by Malcolm Butler. All rights reserved

Most of the sites or buildings recorded in this web site are NOT open to the public and permission to visit a site must always be sought from the landowner or tenant.

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Books

  • Emery, Anthony, 2006, Greater Medieval Houses of England and Wales Vol. 3 Southern England (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press) p. 211
  • Salter, Mike, 2002, The Castles of The Thames Valley and The Chilterns (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 18
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 1 p. 10
  • Oman, Charles W.C., 1926, Castles (1978 edn Beetham House: New York) p. 29
  • Page, Wm and Ditchfield, P.H. (eds), 1923, VCH Berkshire Vol. 3 p. 270-1 online transcription (dates licence as 1339)
  • Harvey, Alfred, 1911, Castles and Walled Towns of England (London: Methuen and Co)
  • Page, Wm and Ditchfield, P.H. (eds), 1906, VCH Berkshire Vol. 1 p. 271
  • Mackenzie, J.D., 1896, Castles of England; their story and structure (New York: Macmillan) Vol. 1 p. 170 online copy
  • Turner, T.H. and Parker, J.H., 1859, Some account of Domestic Architecture in England (Oxford) Vol. 3 Part 2 p. 412 online copy
  • Turner, T.H. and Parker, J.H., 1853, Some account of Domestic Architecture in England (Oxford) Vol. 2 p. 268 online copy
  • Lysons, D. and S., 1806, Magna Britannia Vol. 1 p. 361

Primary Sources

  • Maxwell Lyte, H.C. (ed), 1898, Calendar of Patent Rolls Edward III (1338-40) Vol. 4 p. 24 (licence to crenellate) online copy
  • Maxwell Lyte, H.C. (ed), 1903, Calendar of Patent Rolls Edward III (1345-48) Vol. 7 p. 312, 318, 319-20, 344-45, 379, 427, 436, 460, 543, 544 (attack of 1347) online copy
  • Maxwell Lyte, H.C. (ed), 1905, Calendar of Close Rolls Edward III (1346-49) Vol. 8 p. 251, 261, 271, 305, 396, 399, 410, 412, 444, 490 (attack of 1347) view online copy (requires subscription but searchable) [alternative online copy > http://contentdm.lib.byu.edu/u?/FHMedieval2,57569]