Newcastle-under-Lyme Castle

Newcastle Under Lyme Castle


  • Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire
  • OSGB – SJ 8445 4595
  • Scheduled Monument
  • Grade II Listed Building.


Medieval motte castle measuring 246ft by 328ft with the motte measuring 85.3ft by 131.2ft at its base and 59ft by 85.3ft at the top and standing 13.1ft high. Defended by a ditch measuring 32.8ft wide.

The River Lyme was dammed to supply water to the moat.


1149                              Documented. Granted by King Stephen to Ranulf de Gernon, Earl of Chester.

1153                              Ranulf de Gernon died and the castle went to the Crown.

1169                              £6 was spent on the castle bridge.

1171                              £37 was spent on the castle.

1174                              Two houses were added to the castle.

1189-1190                     Wooden platforms were added to the defences.

1190-1193                     Held by the Sheriff.

1191                              Repairs were made to the chapel and the King’s House.

1193                              One of the towers had stone added to it.

1194                              £4 17s was spent on the castle pool. Repairs made to the King’s Houses.

1195                              Repairs made to the King’s Houses.

1196                              Repairs were made to the bridge.

1197                              Repairs made to the King’s Houses.

1199                              Gaol in the castle was repaired.

12th C                            End: King John carried out works on the castle costing £200.

12th C                            Dating from: Excavations produced a long, narrow building with pilaster buttresses which may have been a 70ft high tower on the site.

12th-13th C                     Strengthened.

1200-1201                     Repairs made to the gaol.

1202                              Repairs made to the bridge costing £24 3s 4d.

1203                              King’s Houses, mills and Mill pond had costs amounting to £14 16s.

1204                              £37 was spent on repairs to the castle.

1205                              The Sheriff was ordered to cut local wood for repairs to the castle.

1206                              Repairs made to the gaol.

1206                              March: King John stayed at the castle.

1207                              £54 6s 9d, and £40 was spent on general repairs to the castle.

1208                              Castle repairs cost £20.

1209                              Castle repairs cost £10.

1214                              Castle repairs cost £5.

1215                              King John gave it to Ranulf de Blunderville, Earl of Chester.

1232                              Ranulf de Blunderville died and it was granted to Gilbert de Segrave.

1234                              Henry III appointed Adam Esturmy as Keeper.

1238                              Granted to Henry de Audley.

1239                              Constable Robert de Tissington was ordered to spend £10 to repair the bank.

1246                              Henry de Audley died and it was granted to Hugh de Frodsham.

1250                              Hugh de Frodsham was ordered to hand the castle over to James de Audley. Hugh de Chania was Constable.

1251                              Hugh de Frodsham was Constable and was given £15 to repair the pallisade, bridge and mill pond, and James de Audley was given £20 for castle repairs.

1253                              William de Fenton was Constable. Pool was repaired again.

1264                              Henry III granted it to Simon de Montford, Earl of Leicester.

1267                              Henry III granted it to his youngest son, Edmund, Earl of Leicester.

1272-1307                     During: Constables were Richard Aubyn, Robert le Venur and Adam de Levendene.

1296                              Edmund, Earl of Leicester died and his son Earl Edmund inherited the castle.

1318                              Roger de Tissington was Constable.

1322                              Earl Edmund was executed for treason and his wife, Alice, daughter of the Earl of Lincoln, held it in Dower.

1342                              Stephen de Yrton was Constable.

1348                              Alice died and Henry, Earl of Lancaster held the castle.

1356                              John de Rocheford was Constable.

1361                              Henry, Earl of Lancaster died and his eldest daughter, Maud, wife of William, Duke of Bavaria held the castle.

1362                              Maud died and it passed to her sister, Blanche, wife of John of Gaunt.

1362                              Leased to Sir Geoffrey Foljambe.

1374                              Sir Geoffrey Foljambe surrendered the lease. Walter de Staunton and Oliver de Barton were Constables at the castle and ordered to repair the houses.

1375                              Repairs cost 100 marks.

1387                              £3 2s 1d was spent on the windows and repairs to the halls.

1399                              Bridge repaired.

1408                              Sir John Blount was Constable.

1420                              John Kyngeley was Constable.

1423                              Bridge repaired.

1428                              £8 11s 4d was spent on the hallway, chimney and repairs to a house.

1429                              £3 19s was paid for making new gates.

1438                              Robert Whitgreve was Constable.

1446                              The bridge and pallisades were repaired.

1447                              Edward Ellesmere was Constable.

1451                              Bridge repaired.

1461                              Ralph Wolseley was Constable.

1474                              Hugh Eggerton was Constable.

1477                              £3 15s 10d was spent on the pool.

1478                              £1 5s 6d was spent on repairs.

1480                              £1 5s 6d was spent on repairs.

1485                              Sir John Savage was Constable.

1540-1546                     Itinerary of John Leland: Ruins.

1541                              Few remains.

1610                              In a bad state and leased to Ralph Sneyd.

1650                              Ralph Sneyd’s grandson, Ralph held the lease.

1698                              Ralph Sneyd sub-let the castle to Thomas Hemmings, and he leased it on to John Wailey.

1702-1714                     During: Leased to William Burslem.

1723                              William Burslem’s son, Thomas, let it to Samuel Proctor. 1828     Walter Sneyd of Keele purchased the castle from the Duchy for £170.

1843                              By: The pool had been mostly repaired.

1849                              Walter Sneyd was ordered to clean up the pool as it smelt badly.

1855                              The Castle Hill Iron Foundry was built on part of the site and caused considerable damage.

1935                              The site and land had been bought by the Iron Foundry Corporation.

1939                              The site was converted into a public park.

1944                              The grounds, called the Queen Elizabeth Garden, was opened to the public.


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