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Richard's Castle

Hereford & Worcester, England
SO 484 703

Map link for Richard's Castle

Photographs copyright 2002 by Laurie Oliver

Above: this section of keep wall is today the castle's most substantial masonry ruin
Below: a nettle-filled ditch still protects the site of the castle

The castle which gave its name to this small ancient borough pre-dates the Conquest by about 16 years, though it was thoroughly Norman. Edward the Confessor, more Norman than English, encouraged the settlement of Norman kinsmen and friends in Herefordshire, and gave them lavish gifts of land. This plot, a few miles south-west of Ludlow, was a grant to Richard FitzScrob, who built himself a strong castle on it about 1050, further elevating the hilltop and bedrock with earth on which to site his keep. The castle continued in his line for several generations before it passed by marriage to the family of Talbot, under the overlordship of the Mortimers.

By Leland's survey of 1540 the castle is reported as still mainly standing, but ruinous, and later it housed a farm and its buildings, with a dovecote in one of the towers. The property passed through several hands before coming finally into the possession of the Salwey family, which continued to hold in for 370 years.

 

Strongholds and Sanctuaries, Peters & Morgan, Alan Sutton Publishing, UK/US, 1993

 

Additional Photographs of Richard's Castle

 

The remains of a gatehouse are supported by scaffolding as ivy struggles to overwhelm the ancient stonework.

 

A large tump with the remains of a masonry tower supported by wooden beams.

 

Remains of the above-mentioned tower

 

Sketch of the site showing the locations of the three sections of masonry above

 


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Copyright 2009 by Jeffrey L. Thomas