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Historic England Research Records

Beaudesert Castle

Hob Uid: 331123
Location :
Warwickshire
Stratford-on-Avon
Beaudesert
Grid Ref : SP1560066130
Summary : Castle documented during the 12th century and in ruins by the mid 16th century. The castle was in existence by circa 1140 but its importance probably declined when the De Montfort estates passed to the Earl of Warwick circa 1369. It was again mentioned in a roll account of 1411, but was not mentioned in a survey of 1547. Earthwork features include fish ponds and bailey, ridge and furrow also present. The extant remains of the castle consist of a flat topped oval artificial mound surrounded by a ditch, covering an area of about 2 acres; a raised bank of earth crossing the ditch to the south-west connects this moated 'keep' with its accompanying courtyard. Scheduled.
More information : (SP 15606613] Beaudesert Castle GT (Site of). (1)

Remnants of earthworks situated on a steep hill called 'The Mount', which forms a promontory jutting towards the little River Alne from a ridge of high ground running north and south. The site is by nature a strong and commanding one.

"The extant remains of the castle consist primarily of a flat topped oval artificial mound surrounded by a ditch, covering altogether an area of about 2 acres; a raised bank of earth crossing the ditch to the south-west connects this moated 'keep' with its accompanying courtyard. At 250' distance beyond this entrance another ditch runs across the flat top of the hill from north-west to south-east; this appears to have formed a division between two
courtyards, an outer and an inner one. The defences which formerly encircled these courts have gradually been demolished and the ditches become filled. Dugdale (a) wrote that they were so filled that it was possible to plough them. (2)

Hardly anything is known of its architectural history. It was in existence by C.1140 but its importance probably declined when the De Montfort estates passed to the Earl of Warwick C.1369. Although an account roll of 1411 mentions some repairs to the castle no mention is made of it in a survey of 1547 and it is presumed by that time to have fallen into ruin. (3)

The earthworks comprise a castle mound with a double bailey to the south-west. Aligned with the north-western boundary is a much later hedgebank, which, at the south-west extremity turns south across the end of the hill. The ditch between the two baileys has been mutilated by the recent insertion of a buried observation post. Access to the castle was by a terraced way from the south into the inner court through a deep inturned entrance. The small adjunct noted on the V.C.H. plan to the east of the main enclosure does not appear contrived but more likely the result of general scarping. To the north, at the foot of the natural slopes, lies a fishpond, almost certainly associated with the castle.

Resurveyed at 1/2500. (4)

Scheduled as 'Beaudesert Castle'. (5)

Additional bibliography with plan (6,7)

Additional bibliography. (8)

Limited excavation in 2001 by the Time Team revealed part of the Great Hall and curtain wall. (9)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : OS 6" 1906.
Page(s) :
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Source Number : 2
Source : The Victoria history of the county of Warwick, volume one
Source details :
Page(s) : 355-7
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Source Number : 2a
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : 'Ants of Warw' (Coventry ed. 1765) (W. Dugdale ).
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Source Number : 3
Source : The Victoria history of the county of Warwick: volume three: Barlichway Hundred
Source details :
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Source Number : 4
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F1 BHS 24-JAN-68
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Source Number : 5
Source : Ancient monuments in England : a list prepared by the Department of the Environment, corrected to 31st December 1971
Source details :
Page(s) : 216
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Source Number : 6
Source : Council for British Archaeology Group 8: West Midlands newsletter
Source details :
Page(s) : 18-Sep
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 1975
Source Number : 7
Source : Council for British Archaeology Group 8: West Midlands newsletter
Source details : (D. Hooke)
Page(s) : 63-4
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 1984
Source Number : 8
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) : 481
Figs. :
Plates :
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Source Number : 9
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : English Heritage Excavation Index
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Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : Documented circa 1140 and circa 1369
Monument End Date : 1379
Monument Start Date : 1130
Monument Type : Motte And Bailey, Ridge And Furrow, Fishpond, Castle, Curtain Wall, Great Hall
Evidence : Earthwork, Documentary Evidence, Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : Ruined by 1547
Monument End Date : 1547
Monument Start Date : 1547
Monument Type : Motte And Bailey, Castle
Evidence : Earthwork, Documentary Evidence
Monument Period Name : Post Medieval
Display Date : Ruined by 1547
Monument End Date : 1547
Monument Start Date :
Monument Type : Motte And Bailey
Evidence : Earthwork, Documentary Evidence

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (County No.)
External Cross Reference Number : WA 52
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (National No.)
External Cross Reference Number : 21510
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : SP 16 NE 3
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Associated Monuments : 1414516
Relationship type : General association

Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, FIELD OBSERVATION ON SP 16 NE 3
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1968-01-24
End Date : 1968-01-24
Associated Activities : Primary, BEAUDESERT CASTLE (TIME TEAM)
Activity type : EVALUATION
Start Date : 2001-01-01
End Date : 2001-12-31