Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:


© Crown Copyright and database right 2021. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2021. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1159012.pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 06-Dec-2021 at 23:53:14.


Statutory Address:

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

County Durham (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:


BRANCEPETH NORTH DRIVE NZ 2237 (South side, off) Brancepeth Park 15/26 Brancepeth Castle 10/5/67 GV I Castle. First mentioned 1216; rebuilt c.1398 for Ralph Neville; extensive rebuilding c:1818-21 by John Patterson for Matthew Russell; internal alterations 1829 and 1864-75 by Anthony Salvin. Dressed medieval masonry and early C19 diagonally-tooled ashlar. Lead-sheathed and felted roofs. Large irregular circular courtyard enclosed by curtain wall and ranges of buildings. Projecting towers and linking ranges described in clockwise direction: gatehouse at north-east;Westmorland tower at east; Constable tower at south-east; L-plan range on south and west including Neville and Bulmer towers near south-west corner; north section of curtain wall, with 2 watch towers, returning to gatehouse. The 4 above-named towers, an un-named tower in angle between Neville and Bulmer towers, and considerable sections of the curtain wall are medieval. The remainder, including gatehouse and ranges on inside of curtain wall, is early C19 in a mix of Norman and Gothic styles. C19 windows, except where noted, are mainly round-arched or of several lights under hoodmoulds. Restored continuous battlements, some sections corbelled out. The 2- and 3- storey, rectangular-plan medieval towers have offset stages and diagonal buttresses surmounted by turrets. Constable and Westmorland towers are lower and were altered in early C19. Late C15 2-light window and C17 cross window on tower in angle between Neville and Bulmer towers. North section of curtain wall has parapet walk and 2 square-plan, battlemented watch towers at angles; north-west tower rebuilt in C19. Massive 3-storey gatehouse has archway flanked by battered round towers. Early C19 tower on south and Hamilton tower on west in similar style to medieval towers. Linking 3- and 4-storey ranges on south, west and inside of curtain wall also similar. Tall narrow Flagstaff tower above porte-cochere, facing gatehouse on inside of courtyard, was heightened c.1870. Low-pitched roofs hidden by battlements. Interior. Neville and Bulmer towers have tunnel-vaulted basements (round- arched and pointed) and groin-vaulted principal chambers above. Early C19 main rooms have Neo-Norman decoration. Entrance Hall has ornate plaster imitation of a medieval timber roof. Huge semi-octagonal staircase hall has cantilevered staircase, starting in one flight and returning in two, and ribbed domed ceiling with central skylight. 6-bay Armour Gallery with quadripartite rib vaults. Chapel in Westmorland Tower was reconstructed in Gothic style in mid C19 (possibly by Salvin) and has vaulted wood roof and elaborate decoration, mosaics, reredos and triforium at west end. Early C19 painted glass in neo-Norman style, in vestibule of Armour Gallery, depicts an Earl of Westmorland and his wife (a similar fragment depicting the Battle of Neville's Cross and now in storage was designed by Charles Muss and probably made by William Collins of the Strand). Tall single-storey mid C20 rendered addition on south outer face of curtain wall, to west of Constable tower, is not of interest. (E.W. Short, The Story of Brancepeth Castle, 1.942). (N. Pevsner rev. E. Williamson, The Buildings of England - County Durham, 2nd edition 1983).

Listing NGR: NZ2232237703


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: County Durham, (1983)
Short, E W, The Story of Brancepeth Castle, (1942)


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

Images of England

Images of England was a photographic record of every listed building in England, created as a snap shot of listed buildings at the turn of the millennium. These photographs of the exterior of listed buildings were taken by volunteers between 1999 and 2008. The project was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Date: 07 Jun 2004
Reference: IOE01/12445/09
Rights: © Mr Bob Cottrell. Source: Historic England Archive
Archive image, may not represent current condition of site.
To view this image please use Firefox, Chrome, Safari, or Edge.

Your Contributions

User contributions are not fact checked and do not represent the official position of Historic England.

Request a correction of the list entry

Read the Enriching the List Terms and Conditions

For any other issue or if you need help, please email: [email protected]

Upcoming maintenance

Enriching The List will be unavailable on 7 & 8 December to allow us to prepare for the launch of an upgraded version.