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Guildford Castle

Hob Uid: 250353
Location :
Surrey
Guildford
Non Civil Parish
Grid Ref : SU9975049260
Summary : A castle with two baileys surrounded by a ditch is first mentioned in 1173. Built on on a mound, the remains of the late 11th early 12th century polygonal shell keep and the roofless 12th century tower keep can be seen. The keep is said to have been dismantled and the roof taken away in 1680. The ruined castle was laid out as gardens in 1886. The castle ditch was sectioned in 1972-3 and no pottery later than the 13th century was found. It is evident from a description of the castle in 1332 that the royal residence at Guildford was in the castle outer bailey, being separated from the castle by a ditch and palisade. During the 14th century it was regarded as a palace. The palace largely went out of use after the reign of Richard II. The castle grounds are scheduled.
More information : [Centred SU 99754926] GUILDFORD CASTLE [G.T.] (Remains of) (1)

Guildford Castle consists of a keep on a mound, and two baileys stretching in line from the keep towards the river; the mound is surrounded by a wide ditch. On top of the mound there still remains a piece of wall of a polygonal shell keep which existed long before the present keep was built. Only fragments now remain of the defences and buildings of the bailey, dating from the C12th; parts of the inner gateway of 1300; and walls incorporated in a C17th house adjacent to the gateway. The keep stands on the east slope of the mound, projecting outward from the old shell wall, which was broken through for its reception. The keep was built c.1150. [Description of architectural details follows]. (2)

The castle is first mentioned in 1173-4, when it was repaired for £26. In 1202 it is mentioned as a prison. In 1246, a hall and chamber were built on the mound for the use of the Sheriffs of Surrey. References to the royal palace S.E. of the keep are numerous during the latter half of Henry III's reign. The place was not regarded as a fortress in the Civil wars, and the keep is said to have been dismantled and the roof taken away in 1680. The site was brought by the corporation in 1886 and laid out as gardens. - [Photo plans AO/58/275/6,8 Full architectural descriptions
of keeps, etc.]. (3)

[Description of keep]. (4)

[Add. references]. Scheduled. (5-13)

The castle mound (SU 99764931) with traces of surrounding ditch, is still a prominent feature although the slopes have been somewhat mutilated by the construction of the public gardens in which it stands. The remains of the early shell keep (probably late C11th or early C12th) are represented by two fragments of walling. The mid C12th tower keep is roofless but in good condition, with traces of modern restoration work. There are no remains that could be associated with the hall and chamber built in 1246 (authority 3 refers). The limits of the two baileys referred to by authority 2 could not be ascertained, the area concerned being built over. To the immediate S.W. of the mound are the remains of domestic buildings (SU 99714926) and at the west end of the lane called CASTLE HILL a gateway (CASTLE ARCH- SU 99694924) with pointed arch and fragments of walling on each side. Some 50.0m. south of the gateway and to the immediate east of QUARRY STREET are the remains of other buildings (at SU 99734919) the character of which is indeterminate but which are probably associated with the castle.
All the remains are in good condition.
Ground photos. AO/58/272/5-8 and AO/58/276/1-4 (14)

Description of 2-JAN-1959 still correct. Published 1/1250 survey correct. (15)

SU 998493. Two sections excavated across the castle ditch in 1972/3 to discover its original form, depth and dating. The first ditch was abandoned due to soil movement. Both showed a V-shaped profile with equal slope-angles on each side, 12m wide at original surface. No pottery older than 13th century was recovered. (16)

Listed by Cathcart King. (17)

Additional reference. (18)

Not documented before the reign of Henry II, the original shell keep was replaced by the rectangular keep. After the death of Henry III, the castle passed to his widow, Gueen eleanor in dower, and remained a possession of successive queens until its demise in the late 14th century. During this period, the queen would have lived in the adjacent palace rather than the castle, and the castle was principally used as the county gaol. In 1391, 14 prisoners escaped for want of repair. It is evident from a description of the castle in 1332 that the royal residence at Guildford was in the castle outer bailey, being separated from the castle by a ditch and palisade. During the 14th century it was regarded as a palace. The palace largely went out of use after the reign of Richard II. (19)

An early 13th century lime kiln, which may have been usd to repair the palace was excavated in the mid 1990s by Rob Poulton of the Surey CCAU (unpublished). (20)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : OS 25" 1934
Page(s) :
Figs. :
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Vol(s) :
Source Number : 2
Source : The castles of Great Britain
Source details :
Page(s) : 88-9
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 11
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Little Guide to Surrey, 7th Edn., (1952), pp.92-3 (J.C. Cox)
Page(s) :
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Vol(s) :
Source Number : 12
Source : Surrey archaeological collections : relating to the history and antiquities of the County
Source details :
Page(s) : 31
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 16 - 1901
Source Number : 13
Source : Scheduled Monument Notification
Source details : AMs. Eng. Wales 1961 87 (M.O.W
Page(s) :
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Vol(s) :
Source Number : 14
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F1 GG 03-JAN-59
Page(s) :
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Vol(s) :
Source Number : 15
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F2 ASP 15-JUL-66
Page(s) :
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Vol(s) :
Source Number : 16
Source : Bulletin of the Surrey Archaeological Society
Source details : (F Holling)
Page(s) : 2
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 106 - 1974
Source Number : 17
Source : Castellarium anglicanum : an index and bibliography of the castles in England, Wales and the Islands. Volume II : Norfolk-Yorkshire and the islands
Source details :
Page(s) : 465
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 2
Source Number : 18
Source : Ordnance Survey guide to castles in Britain
Source details :
Page(s) : 54
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Vol(s) :
Source Number : 19
Source : The history of the King's Works, volume 2 : the Middle Ages
Source details :
Page(s) : 658-9,950-5
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Source Number : 20
Source : English Heritage Monuments Protection Programme Industrial Monuments Assessment, Step 3 Reports
Source details : Lime Cement and Plaster, 2000, Surrey 8
Page(s) :
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Vol(s) :
Source Number : 3
Source : The Victoria history of the county of Surrey: volume three
Source details :
Page(s) : 554-60
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 1911
Source Number : 4
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Proceedings of the Oxford Architectural & Historical Society Vol.4 (1880-85) pp.349-50 (Field Meeting)
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Source Number : 5
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Antiquities of Surrey, 4th Edn. (1951), pp 95, 104 (Surrey CC)
Page(s) :
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Source Number : 6
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Schedule of Antiquities of Surrey, (1913) pp. 35-6 (P.M. Johnston)
Page(s) :
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Source Number : 7
Source : Archaeologia : or miscellaneous tracts relating to antiquity
Source details : (E. King)
Page(s) : 409-11
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 4 - 1777
Source Number : 8
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Mediaeval Military Architecture in England, Vol.2 (1884), pp 53-71 (G.T. Clark) (Plan)
Page(s) :
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Vol(s) :
Source Number : 9
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Munimenta Antiqua, Vol. 3 (1804), (E. King) (Plans, diagrams, etc.)
Page(s) :
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Source Number : 10
Source : The Berks, Bucks and Oxon archaeological journal
Source details :
Page(s) : 121-2
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 14 - 1908

Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : C11
Monument End Date : 1199
Monument Start Date : 1100
Monument Type : Shell Keep
Evidence : Ruined Building
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : 13
Monument End Date : 1299
Monument Start Date : 1200
Monument Type : Castle, Keep, Lime Kiln
Evidence : Ruined Building, Find, Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : 1230-1399
Monument End Date : 1399
Monument Start Date : 1230
Monument Type : Royal Palace
Evidence : Documentary Evidence
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : From 1272-1400
Monument End Date : 1399
Monument Start Date : 1272
Monument Type : Dower House, Prison
Evidence : Ruined Building
Monument Period Name : Post Medieval
Display Date : Post Medieval
Monument End Date : 1901
Monument Start Date : 1540
Monument Type : Ornamental Garden
Evidence : Earthwork

Components and Objects:
Period : Medieval
Component Monument Type : Castle, Keep, Lime Kiln
Object Type : VESSEL
Object Material : Pottery

Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (National No.)
External Cross Reference Number : 12787
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (County No.)
External Cross Reference Number : SU 1
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : SMR Number (Surrey)
External Cross Reference Number : 1664
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : SU 94 NE 52
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, FIELD OBSERVATION ON SU 94 NE 52
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1959-01-03
End Date : 1959-01-03
Associated Activities : Primary, FIELD OBSERVATION ON SU 94 NE 52
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1966-07-15
End Date : 1966-07-15
Associated Activities : Primary, GUILDFORD CASTLE DITCH
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1972-01-01
End Date : 1973-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, GUILDFORD CASTLE
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1987-01-01
End Date : 1987-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, GUILDFORD CASTLE AND PALACE
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1990-01-01
End Date : 1994-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, ABBEYFIELD, 1 CASTLE HILL
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 1992-01-01
End Date : 1992-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, CASTLE HILL
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 1993-01-01
End Date : 1993-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, 1 SYDENHAM ROAD
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 1993-01-01
End Date : 1993-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, SOUTH HALL, CASTLE HILL
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 1993-01-01
End Date : 1993-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, 1 CASTLE HILL, GUILDFORD
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 2000-01-01
End Date : 2000-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, GUILDFORD CASTLE MOTTE
Activity type : EVALUATION
Start Date : 2001-01-01
End Date : 2001-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, 1 CASTLE HILL
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 2001-01-01
End Date : 2001-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, CASTLE KEEP, GUILDFORD CASTLE
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 2004-01-01
End Date : 2004-12-31