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List Entry Summary

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


List entry Number: 1283004



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

County: Cumbria

District: Barrow-in-Furness

District Type: District Authority


National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: I

Date first listed: 10-Nov-1949

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: LBS

UID: 388354

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Building

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

Reasons for Designation

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


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



SD26SW PIEL ISLAND 708-1/8/238 Piel Castle 10/11/49


Ruins of castle. Licensed 1327, dismantled 1403, repaired c1429 (previous list description). Cobble rubble with red sandstone dressings. Incomplete 3-storey keep now of 2 long cells with north gatehouse; east side collapsed. Inner defence on 2 sides has gatehouse to west and corner towers. Less complete outer bailey with section of wall and freestanding towers linked by mound and ditch. Keep: chamfered plinth; offset diagonal buttresses and mid-point buttresses; pointed, 2-light windows originally with quatrefoils. Vaulted gatehouse has moulded, pointed arch with clinging figure carved on keystone; hexagonal clasping buttresses. Internal spiral stair to left is lit by slits each side of the buttress; wall bows out at another spiral stair on right return. Projection at south-east corner has different floor levels. Vaulted look-outs at corners of parapet. Inner defence: 2-storey west gatehouse with pointed arches and 2 flights of steps against wall to north; north-west tower is 5-sided. Furness Abbey (qv) engaged in much trade through Piel Harbour and fortified this site soon after the Scottish invasions of 1316 and 1322. The castle provided a secure warehouse for contraband goods including Flemish wool. Henry IV briefly took possession but not before the abbots had the roof stripped to ensure the King did not install revenue men. In 1487 Lambert Simnel and an army of mercenaries landed at Piel intending to dethrone Henry VII; their march ended in defeat at the Battle of Stoke. By 1530 the castle had long been in ruins. Scheduled Ancient Monument now in the care of English Heritage. (Barnes F: Barrow and District: Barrow: 1968-: 32-33, 38).

Listing NGR: SD2330063566

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Barnes, F , Barrow and District, (1968), 32-33

National Grid Reference: SD 23284 63593


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End of official listing