History, tourist information, and nearby accommodation
In 1270 Middleham was granted to the Neville family of Raby. The Nevilles were emerging onto the national stage as a real power in the late 13th century, a position they were to occupy for the next 2 centuries, and Middleham was one of their most important bases in the north. Around 1300 Ralph Neville enlarged Middleham, adding a high curtain wall around the stone keep, essentially turning it into a quadrangular castle with a keep in the centre. The wall does not extend very far away from the keep, echoing the concentric castle designs perfected in northern Wales by Edward I. The keep was high enough that archers on the parapet could have shot their arrows over the curtain wall easily. In the 15th century the curtain wall was heightened to create space for new living quarters for retainers built against the inner surface of the wall on three sides. These lodgings take up much of the interior space inside the curtain wall, leaving only narrow passages. The main living quarters for the lord or steward remained inside the eep itself.
Under the Nevilles the northeast corner tower was rebuilt as a gatehouse. This new gatehouse may have been the work of Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, better known to history as 'the Kingmaker'. Middleham was the Kingmaker's main power base in the north, and it was here that he raised George, Duke of Clarence, and Richard, Duke of Gloucester (later Richard III) after their father Richard, Duke of York was killed at the Battle of Wakefield in 1460. The young nobles were raised together with Neville's own family, and so Richard met his future wife Anne Neville.
In 1471 Edward gave Middleham to his brother Richard, and Richard married Anne Neville. They made their home at Middleham and it was here that their only child, Edward, was born in 1473. Sadly, Edward did not survive childhood and died in the castle in 1484. (see photos of his memorial in our article on Sheriff Hutton church).
About Middleham Castle
Address: Castle Hill, Middleham, Yorkshire, England, DL8 4QG
Attraction Type: Castle
Website: Middleham Castle
Phone: 0196 962 3899
English Heritage - see also: English Heritage memberships (official website)
Photo Credit: Ian Taylor, licensed for reuse under the Creative Commons Licence
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13th century (Time Period) - 14th century (Time Period) - 15th century (Time Period) - 17th century (Time Period) - castle (Architecture) - Civil War (Architecture) - Edward I (Person) - Edward IV (Person) - James I (Person) - Norman (Architecture) - Richard III (Person) -
NEARBY HISTORIC ATTRACTIONS
Heritage Rated from 1- 5 (low to exceptional) on historic interest
Braithwaite Hall - 1.2 miles (Historic Building)
Coverham Abbey - 1.5 miles (Abbey)
Coverham, Holy Trinity Church - 2 miles (Historic Church)
Wensley, Holy Trinity Church - 2.6 miles (Historic Church)
Jervaulx Abbey - 2.8 miles (Abbey)
Constable Burton Hall Gardens - 3.2 miles (Garden)
Bolton Castle - 6.4 miles (Castle)
Thorp Perrow Arboretum - 8.2 miles (Garden)
Nearest Accommodation to Middleham Castle: