The Keep at Middleham Castle
Middleham Castle is located in the North Riding of Yorkshire. The castle has a large keep which was built in around 1170 by Robert Fitzralf. The Neville family bought the castle and it became the main residence of Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick the 'Kingmaker'. Richard (III), the Duke of Gloucester, also spent a lot of time there.
Middleham Castle, located in Wensleydale north Yorkshire, was founded in around 1190 by Robert FitzRanulf. The focus of the construction at this time was the large central rectangular keep made of coursed rubble. At each corner of the keep is a tower.
Down the length of the keep is a cross-wall dividing the building into two. On the lower level can be found the storeroom and the kitchens with one or more wells. The roof of this basement level was vaulted in stone. The only access to this level was by a spiral staircase in the south-east corner.
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Access to the keep was via a long flight of stairs running along the east side of the building up to the first floor. A wall enclosed the stairs but they were open to the sky so that visitors could be monitored, and attacked if necessary, from above. Several doors and guards stood between the foot of the stairs and an anteroom where guests were greeted.
The Great Hall was where the banquets, meetings and court hearings took place. At the southern end of the hall are two passageways, one leading to a toilet and the other to stairs leading down to the basement. At the north end is a passage to a chapel built into the north-east tower and a passage through the centre wall to the western half of the keep.