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Willimoteswick Manor, Bardon Mill

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Willimontswick; Willymonteswyke; Willimowteswike; Willymonnteswyke

In the civil parish of Bardon Mill.
In the historic county of Northumberland.
Modern Authority of Northumberland.
1974 county of Northumberland.

OS Map Grid Reference: NY77076363
Latitude 54.96690° Longitude -2.35971°

Willimoteswick Manor, Bardon Mill has been described as a certain Fortified Manor House.

There are major building remains.

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


Gatehouse with adjacent ranges, C16, altered. Coursed rubble, stone dressings, slate roofs on adjacent buildings. Rectangular gatehouse at north-east corner of rectangular fortified enclosure, 2-storey east range adjoins south end of gatehouse and single-storey north range runs to west. Front of gatehouse: segmental-headed arch into passage with segmental tunnel vault, scattered fenestration including square-headed opening, with elaborate moulded surround, and 2 2-light mullioned windows with hoodmoulds. Oversailing parapet on 3 rounded stepped courses. Rear elevation similar, with small rectangular lights and one 2-light window over entrance passage, parapet with 2 projecting spouts. Interior has 2 square-headed doorways on right side of passage, the second into newel stair in internal circular turret. Various doorway openings and fireplaces. Altered east range has several C16 or C17 window openings with chamfered surrounds towards courtyard and one 1st floor door with chamfered segmental-pointed head. Roof has old principal rafter trusses with collars. North range, now byres, C18 incorporating earlier masonry towards the west end of the north wall. Segmental-headed arches to courtyard, blocked ventilation slits in rear elevation, principal-rafter roof trusses with collars.
Willimontswick was a fortified manor house rather than a true castle. It is of some note historically as the seat of the Ridley family and birthplace of Bishop Ridley (d.1555). (Listed Building Report)

At Willymonteswyke ys a good toure & stone house joyninge there unto of the Inherytence of Nycolas Rydley kepte in good rep'ac'ons. (1541 Survey)
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Sources of information, references and further reading
  • Websites (Gatehouse is not responsible for the content of external websites.)
  • Books
    • Geldard, Ed, 2009, Northumberland Strongholds (London: Frances Lincoln) p. 118
      Dodds, John F., 1999, Bastions and Belligerents (Newcastle upon Tyne: Keepdate Publishing) p. 399
      Salter, Mike, 1997, The Castles and Tower Houses of Northumberland (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 112
      Emery, Anthony, 1996, Greater Medieval Houses of England and Wales Vol. 1 Northern England (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press) p. 154-5
      Pettifer, A., 1995, English Castles, A guide by counties (Woodbridge: Boydell Press) p. 199-200
      Jackson, M.J.,1992, Castles of Northumbria (Carlisle) p. 133-4 (plan)
      Rowland, T.H., 1987 (reprint1994), Medieval Castles, Towers, Peles and Bastles of Northumberland (Sandhill Press) p. 11, 48, 49
      King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2 p. 344
      Graham, Frank, 1976, The Castles of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Frank Graham) p. 355-58
      Long, B., 1967, Castles of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) p. 174
      Pevsner, N., 1957, Buildings of England: Northumberland (London, Penguin) p. 324
      Hugill, R.,1939, Borderland Castles and Peles (1970 Reprint by Frank Graham) p. 231-4
      Harvey, Alfred, 1911, Castles and Walled Towns of England (London: Methuen and Co)
      Mackenzie, J.D., 1896, Castles of England; their story and structure (New York: Macmillan) Vol. 2 p. 433 online copy
      Tomlinson, W.W., 1897, Comprehensive Guide to Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) p. 163-5
      Bates, C.J., 1891, Border Holds of Northumberland (London and Newcastle: Andrew Reid) p. xxiii, 48, 383-90 (Also published as the whole of volume 14 (series 2) of Archaeologia Aeliana view online)
      Hodgson, J., 1840, History of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) Part 2 Vol. 3 p. 340-2 (not very useful) online copy
      Hodgson, J., 1832, History of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) Part 2 Vol. 2 p. 322-5 online copy
      Hodgson, J. and Laird, F., 1813, Beauties of England and Wales; Northumberland Vol. 12 p. 116
  • Periodical Articles
    • Hedley, W. Percy, 1954, 'The Ridleys of Ridley and Willimontswick' Archaeologia Aeliana (ser4) Vol. 32 p. 160-75
      Gibson, J. 1925-6, Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle-upon-Tyne (ser4) Vol. 2 p. 75-8
      Bates, C.J., 1891, 'Border Holds of Northumberland' Archaeologia Aeliana (ser2) Vol. 14 p. xxiii, 48, 383-90 online copy
      1889, The Monthly Chronicle of North Country Lore and Legend p. 517 online copy
      1822, The Gentleman's Magazine Vol. 92 Part 1 p. 401-3 online copy
  • Primary (Medieval documents or transcriptions of such documents - This section is far from complete and the secondary sources should be consulted for full references.)
  • Antiquarian (Histories and accounts from late medieval and early modern writers)
  • Other sources: Theses; 'grey' literature; in-house reports; unpublished works; etc.
    • English Heritage, 2010, Heritage at Risk Register 2010 North East (London: English Heritage) p. 25 online copy
      Howard, R.E. and Arnold, A.J., 2009, Willmoteswick, Bardon Mill, Northumberland: Tree-Ring Analysis of Timbers (English Heritage Research Department Reports series 87-2009) online summery
      Wrathmell, S., 1975, Deserted and Shrunken Villages in Southern Northumberland from the Twelfth to the Twentieth Centuries (PhD Thesis Cardiff)
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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.
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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 Saturday, November 15, 2014

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