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A comprehensive gazetteer and bibliography of the medieval castles, fortifications and palaces of England, Wales and the Islands.
 
 
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Norwich Castle

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
castellum Norwici

In the civil parish of Norwich.
In the historic county of Norfolk.
Modern Authority of Norfolk.
1974 county of Norfolk.

OS Map Grid Reference: TG23190853
Latitude 52.62840° Longitude 1.29604°

Norwich Castle has been described as a certain Timber Castle, and also as a certain Masonry Castle.

There are major building remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.
This is a Grade 1 listed building protected by law*.

Description

This was the only castle built by William I in East Anglia. It was probably under construction before the end of the 1060s as an earthwork and timber fortification. In around 1100 the motte was heightened, and the surrounding ditch deepened. The square keep was built on top of the motte around 1095-1110 to serve as a Royal Palace. The construction is Caen stone over a flint core. The Keep is entered at first floor level through an external structure, the Bigod Tower. Although the Keep remains, its outer shell has been repaired repeatedly, most recently in 1835-8 by A. Salvin. The Norman bridge over the inner ditch was replaced in about 1825. The castle was used as a gaol from 1220, with additional buildings constructed on the top of the motte next to the Keep. These buildings were demolished and rebuilt in 1789-93 with more alterations occurring in 1820. The site ceased to be used as a gaol in 1887 when it was purchased by the city to be used as a museum. (Norfolk HER)

From documentary sources, it is known that the castle had a southern bailey with an inner barbican, a small bailey on the north-east side, and that the whole area was bounded by Castle Fees, which may have been marked by a ditch or bank. 1193 Pipe Roll gives total garrison as seventy-five knights and men at arms both horse and foot.
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

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Sources of information, references and further reading
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The information on this web page may be derived from information compiled by and/or copyright of English Heritage, County Historic Environment Records and other individuals and organisations. All the sources given should be consulted to identify the original copyright holder and permission obtained from them before use of the information on this site for commercial purposes.
The author and compiler of Gatehouse does not receive any income from the site and funds it himself. The information within this site is provided freely for educational purposes only.
The bibliography owes much to various bibliographies produced by John Kenyon for the Council for British Archaeology, the Castle Studies Group and others.
Suggestions for finding online and/or hard copies of bibliographical sources can be seen at this link.
Minor archaeological investigations, such as watching brief reports, and some other 'grey' literature is most likely to be held by H.E.R.s but is often poorly referenced and is unlikely to be recorded here, or elsewhere, but some suggestions can be found here.
The possible site or monument is represented on maps as a point location. This is a guide only. It should be noted that OS grid references defines an area, not a point location. In practice this means the actual center of the site or monument may often, but not always, be to the North East of the point shown. Locations derived from OS grid references and from latitude longitiude may differ by a small distance.
Further information on mapping and location can be seen at this link.
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*The listed building may not be the actual medieval building, but a building on the site of, or incorporating fragments of, the described site.
This record last updated on Friday, November 14, 2014

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