Whittington Castle

hittington Castle's remains are situated in North Wales near Oswestry. The defensive site could date back to the Iron Age consisting of banks and ditches. The Normans built a motte and bailey castle here and improvements and redesign continued over the centuries. Whittington is unusual as it is sited on low ground but its defence is supplied by marshes and would have been surrounded by a moat. The outer gatehouse (pictured here) are the main remains. Travelling through the gatehouse would have led to the outer bailey. The inner bailey was surrounded by a moat and access to it was via a drawbridge from the outer bailey. The inner bailey consisted of a roughly rectangular structure with five circular towers, two of which formed a gatehouse. The castle is owned by the Whittington Castle Preservation Trust who are raising money to help maintain the ruins.


Whittington Castle Key Facts
CountyShropshire (13 castles)
CategoriesMotte & Bailey
OwnershipBaronial castle
RemainsSmall amount survives
Access to siteOnly open at certain times
Outer Defences
MoatA series of moats and marshy ground helped protect this castle.
TimeRef Rating
TimeRef Comments
Some remains can be seen and explored. Entrance fee helps support the castle's upkeep.


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Motte and Bailey Castles

Virtual reconstruction

The Norman Conquerors built their castles in locations where they could keep control of the local populations of Saxons or at important locations such as river crossings or on key roads. Many motte and bailey castles were built on the border with Wales to try and keep the Welsh at bay. The advantage of this type of castle was that it was quick to construct. Making a fortification from wood was much easier than making one of stone.

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