Castle Howe motte and bailey castle


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1007130

Date first listed: 29-Jan-1964

Location Description: Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


Ordnance survey map of Castle Howe motte and bailey castle
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Location Description: Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Cumbria

District: Eden (District Authority)

Parish: Tebay

National Grid Reference: NY 61357 05095


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

Motte and bailey castles are medieval fortifications introduced into Britain by the Normans. They comprised a large conical mound of earth or rubble, the motte, surmounted by a palisade and a stone or timber tower. In a majority of examples an embanked enclosure containing additional buildings, the bailey, adjoined the motte. Motte castles and motte-and-bailey castles acted as garrison forts during offensive military operations, as strongholds, and, in many cases, as aristocratic residences and as centres of local or royal administration. Built in towns, villages and open countryside, motte and bailey castles generally occupied strategic positions dominating their immediate locality and, as a result, are the most visually impressive monuments of the early post-Conquest period surviving in the modern landscape. Over 600 motte castles or motte-and-bailey castles are recorded nationally, with examples known from most regions. As one of a restricted range of recognised early post-Conquest monuments, they are particularly important for the study of Norman Britain and the development of the feudal system. Although many were occupied for only a short period of time, motte castles continued to be built and occupied from the 11th to the 13th centuries, after which they were superseded by other types of castle. Castle Howe motte and bailey castle is highly representative of its period and although damaged by river erosion, is still preserved as an upstanding earthwork. The monument will contain archaeological deposits relating to its construction, use and abandonment. The monument provides insight into the character and development of fortifications in the medieval period.


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


The monument includes the remains of a medieval motte and bailey castle situated on the southern bank of the River Lune nearly opposite the confluence with Birk Beck. The monument survives as a large circular mound (motte) with an additional irregular shaped enclosure (the bailey) to the south defined by a rampart and ditch. The motte stands up to 3.5m high above the bailey and between the motte and the bailey there is a semi-circular ditch with a section of rampart preserved on the south side. Further earthworks of the bailey survive to the south with evidence of exposed stone structures visible on the eastern side.

SOURCES PastScape Monument No:- 13204 NMR:- NY60NW4 Cumbria HER:- 1946


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: CU 367

Legacy System: RSM - OCN

End of official listing