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Horton Castle, Blyth

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Low Horton; Horton next the Sea; Horton juxta mare

In the civil parish of Blyth Valley.
In the historic county of Northumberland.
Modern Authority of Northumberland.
1974 county of Northumberland.
Medieval County of Northumberland.

OS Map Grid Reference: NZ28077969
Latitude 55.11093° Longitude -1.56190°

Horton Castle, Blyth has been described as a certain Fortified Manor House.

There are cropmark/slight earthwork remains.


The licence for the fortification of his manor house was granted to Sir Guischard de Charron on Dec. 28th.1292.
The moat, which still exists, was possibly the innermost of 2 ditches; there is now no trace of either the outer ditch or the fortress, the building being dismantled in 1809.
Although some portion of it remained 20 years later {1829} that too had vanished by 1909. It was known as Horton Castle (Craster 1909).
No trace of the old Manor House remains.
The moat on the south side is now completely filled in, and on the north and east side is visible in one or two places as a vague depression but slopes are not surveyable. No trace was seen of the outer ditch referred to (F1 EG 08-APR-54). (PastScape)

On Saturday, December 20th, 1292, when returning southward from adjudicating the claims to the Scottish throne, Edward I. arrived at Horton and was there entertained by Charron over the Sunday. The knight turned this visit to advantage by requesting and obtaining permission to fortify his manor-house. A week later, on December 28th, the necessary licence to crenellate was granted to him at Newcastle. The work of fortification seems to have proceeded intermittently for the next six years, for as late as June 5th, 1297, Charron granted to one of his tenants a selion of his demesne in exchange for a selion lying nearer to the moat of the manor-house which, it may be inferred, was then course of construction. This moat, which was possibly the innermost of two ditches and separated from the outer moat by an earthen rampart, still exists and contains an area measuring 190 feet by 203 feet; but no trace remains of the fortress that once stood within it. The old building was finally dismantled in 1809, and, though some portion of it remained twenty years later, that too has vanished, nor can any architectural fragment be discovered except a single arch-stone, which is of fourteenth rather than of thirteenth century date. As an example of the true type of pele or fortified enclosure, its destruction is to be regretted. (Craster 1909)

A Royal licence to crenellate was granted in 1292 Dec 28 (Click on the date for details of this licence.).


Fortified Manor House, licence to crenellate of 1292 granted to Sir Guischard de Charron, latterly a Delaval possesion, dismantled in 1809. The course of a moat can be traced. Called pelum in 1317-18 and fortalicium in 1415 (The licence means this was a stone building, is this an early C14 use of pele to mean a stone building? Most early uses of pele are said to refer to timber palisades and it's use for small tower houses is supposed to be relatively modern, although the term 'pelehouse' for bastles is used C16.)
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:20:08

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