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Historic England Research Records

Barwick In Elmet Hillfort And Motte And Bailey Castle

Hob Uid: 52862
Location :
Leeds
Barwick in Elmet and Scholes
Grid Ref : SE3989937615
Summary : Barwick in Elmet comprises the earthwork and buried remains of a large Iron Age univallate hillfort and a twelfth century motte and bailey castle. After the Roman period it may have been the chief stronghold of the Kingdom of Elmet.The Iron Age hillfort encloses the summits of two adjacent hills;Wendel Hill and Hall Tower Hill. Substantial remains of the hillfort's enclosing bank and ditch have survived on Wendel Hill (up to 4.5m high from base to summit) and on the south-west part of Hall Tower Hill; though these were modified in the 12th century. The south circuit of the bank and ditch, on the south side of Hall Tower Hill, was also identified during construction work in the 1960s. The remains of a massive inturned entrance are visible on the north-west side of Wendel Hill, and much of the interior of the hillfort has survived. Various finds have been uncovered including coins dating to the second century BC and first century AD. The motte and bailey castle lies within the hillfort on Hall Tower Hill. It was built at the southern end of the hillfort and comprised the motte (c.15m high), surrounded by a deep ditch (c.15m wide) and the bailey, which extended to the north and east. The motte is roughly circular and measures approximately 55m in diameter. There is a 13m platform on the top and the motte is surrounded by a 6m wide ditch which rises onto the bailey. There is an 11m wide rampart on the north-west, west, and south-west sides of the motte. To the north-east and east there is a further section of the outer ditch, which in places measures 11m wide.The Iron Age hillfort has been identified by some researchers as the capital of Cartimandua. It has also been interpreted as the capital or chief stronghold of the Kingdom of Elmet and was later owned by Edwin Earl of Mercia. The motte and bailey castle was built by the de Lacy family and it was the administrative centre of the northern part of the Honour.
More information : [SE 39833749] Hall Tower Hill [GT]
[SE 39893769] Wendel Hill [GT] (1)

The earthworks at Barwick in Elmet comprise two roughly semi-circular courts, enclosing an area about 15 acres. The northern or greater court [Wendel Hill] has a steep natural slope on its north and west sides which is capped by the remains of a bank and ditch. On the east the ground is level, but here, a bank and ditch have been constructed, the bank varying in height from 10-15ft. from the bottom of the ditch. The chief feature in the southern court, is the large moated mound [Hall Tower Hill]forty feet in height from its circumscribing ditch, standing towards the south side of a broad level platform or bailey. The oldest coin found within the earthworks, is datable to (BC 196-173) and near the same spot a coin datable to (AD 41-54) After the Roman era, Barwick was probably the capital or chief stronghold of the Kingdom of Elmet, and was later owned by Edwin Earl of Mercia. Ilbert de Lascy, Lord of the Manor at the time of the Domesday, probably utilized the earthworks he found at Barwick, and created a stronghold here. (2)

Hall Tower Hill, a fine example of motte and baily castle. The motte is about 40 ft. high surrounded by a ditch 50 ft. wide. Wendel Hill (Windhill in ancient documents) an enclosure of eight and a half acres, might well be the burgus attached to the castle. (3)

Scheduled. (4)

A univallate I.A. Hill-fort including both Wendel Hill and Hall Tower Hill bailey, with a single entrance on the west (The Boyle) with a motte and bailey superimposed. A 25" survey of the earthworks has been made, and the motte photographed on G.Ps. AO/61/97/2,3,4, & 5. (5)

Survey of 17.5.61 revised due to modern mutilation. (6)

Listed by Challis and Harding and described as a 15 acre hill fort (Iron Age) beneath later earthworks. (7)

SE 395 375. Barwick in Elmet.

This site has been strongly advocated as the capital of Cartimandua. Here, beneath the earthworks of a Norman motte and bailey castle, a 15 acre (6.1ha) hillfort has been recognised. It has a commanding position on an east-west route across the Pennines through the Aire gap, and is well situated for north-south communications on the western side of the Ouse-Trent basin, and only 2.5 miles (4km) from the later line of the Roman road from Lincoln to Aldborough. The only finds of Roman date have been two coins. (8)

This site is considered in the context of native settlements east of the Pennines, and includes a plan of the hillfort at Barwick. See article for detailed account. (9)

Please refer to these sources for additional references. (10-12)

SE 399 376. Barwick in Elmet. Listed in gazetteer as a hillfort covering 6ha. (13)

SE 3994 3767; SE 3982 3749. Barwick in Elmet large univallate hillfort and motte and bailey castle. Scheduled RSM No 13299. (14)

Listed by Cathcart King. (15)

A Medieval motte and bailey, centred at SE 3982 3749, is visible as an earthwork on air photographs. The motte is roughly circular and measures approximately 55m in diameter. There is a 13m platform on the top. The motte is surrounded by a 6m wide ditch which rises onto the bailey. Around the north-west, west, and south-west sides there is an 11m wide rampart that lies between 17m and 26m from the motte (the widest section to the west). To the north-east and east there is a further section of the outer ditch. It is also 11m wide, but appears to be slightly banked along the side internal to the bailey.
(16)


Barwick in Elmet comprises the remains of a large Iron Age univallate hillfort and a twelfth century motte and bailey castle.
The Iron Age hillfort enclosed the tops of two adjacent hills, Wendel Hill and Hall Tower Hill. The motte and bailey castle, lies within the hillfort on Hall Tower Hill. Substantial remains of the hillfort's enclosing bank and ditch survive round Wendel Hill (up to 4.5m from base to summit) and on the south-west part of Hall Tower Hill, though they have been modified with the 12th century fortifications. The south circuit of the bank and ditch, circling the south side of Hall Tower Hill was also identified when houses were built next to the motte in the 1960s. The remains of a massive inturned entrance are visible in the northern circuit, on the north-west side of Wendel Hill, and much of the interior of the hillfort is preserved in the open areas. Various finds have been uncovered including coins dating to the second century BC and first century AD.

The motte and bailey castle was built at the southern end of the hillfort and comprised the motte, (c.15m high) surrounded by a deep ditch (c.15m wide) and the bailey which extended to the north and east. The east side of the bailey has largely been built over by urban development within Barwick in Elmet, but enough remains for its domestic and defensive features to be identified.

The castle was built by the de Lacy family and it was the administrative centre of the northern part of the Honour. (17)


Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : 6" 1956
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 2
Source : Publications of the Thoresby Society
Source details : History of Barwick in Elmet by F.S. Colman
Page(s) : 13-24, 106
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 17, 1908
Source Number : 11
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Yorks Notes and Queries
Page(s) : 283
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 2, 1906
Source Number : 12
Source : Yorkshire's ruined castles : an account of their history, asssociations and architecture with a chapter on the fortified houses of the county
Source details :
Page(s) : 124-5
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 13
Source : British Hillforts: an index
Source details :
Page(s) : 144
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 62
Source Number : 14
Source : Scheduled Monument Notification
Source details : 27/07/1992
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 15
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) : 513
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 2, 1983
Source Number : 16
Source : Vertical aerial photograph reference number
Source details : RAF F21/58/1209 0027 14-Aug-1953
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 17
Source : Scheduled Monument Notification
Source details : 10-Jul-92
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 3
Source : The Victoria history of the county of York, volume two
Source details : (ES Armitage & DH Montgomerie)
Page(s) : 26-27
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 1912
Source Number : 4
Source : Scheduled Monument Notification
Source details : Ancient Monuments of England & Wales 1958 (M.O.W.)
Page(s) : 93
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 5
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F1 ECW 17-MAY-61
Page(s) :
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Vol(s) :
Source Number : 6
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F2 RL 25-OCT-64
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 7
Source : Later prehistory from the Trent to the Tyne
Source details :
Page(s) : 47
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 20(i-ii)
Source Number : 8
Source : Britannia : a journal of Romano-British and kindred studies
Source details : (W S Hanson and D B Campbell)
Page(s) : 74-5
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 17, 1986
Source Number : 9
Source : Rome and the Brigantes : the impact of Rome on northern England
Source details :
Page(s) : 28-40
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 10
Source : Yorkshire Archaeological Society : Roman Antiquities Section bulletin
Source details :
Page(s) : 4
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 25, 1988

Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Iron Age
Display Date : Iron Age
Monument End Date : 43
Monument Start Date : -800
Monument Type : Univallate Hillfort
Evidence : Earthwork, Find
Monument Period Name : Early Medieval
Display Date : Establised early medieval period
Monument End Date : 1066
Monument Start Date : 410
Monument Type : Burh
Evidence : Conjectural Evidence
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : Established 12th C
Monument End Date : 1200
Monument Start Date : 1101
Monument Type : Motte And Bailey
Evidence : Earthwork

Components and Objects:
Period : Iron Age
Component Monument Type : Univallate Hillfort
Object Type : COIN
Object Material :

Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (County No.)
External Cross Reference Number : WY 327
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (National No.)
External Cross Reference Number : 13299
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : SMR Number (West Yorkshire)
External Cross Reference Number : 4
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : SE 33 NE 7
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, WENDEL HILL, HALL TOWER HILL, SCHOLES
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1912-01-01
End Date : 1912-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, FIELD OBSERVATION ON SE 33 NE 7
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1961-05-17
End Date : 1961-05-17
Associated Activities : Primary, FIELD OBSERVATION ON SE 33 NE 7
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1964-10-25
End Date : 1964-10-25
Associated Activities : Primary, WENDEL HILL
Activity type : EVALUATION
Start Date : 1991-01-01
End Date : 1991-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, LAND OFF MAIN STREET, BARWICK-IN-ELMET
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 2000-01-01
End Date : 2000-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, ENGLISH HERITAGE: LOWER WHARFEDALE NMP
Activity type : AERIAL PHOTOGRAPH INTERPRETATION
Start Date : 2002-03-04
End Date : 2004-11-09
Associated Activities : Primary, 60 THE BOYLE, BARWICK IN ELMET
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 2008-01-01
End Date : 2008-12-31