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Burton Upon Trent Castle

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;

In the civil parish of Burton Upon Trent.
In the historic county of Staffordshire.
Modern Authority of Staffordshire.
1974 county of Staffordshire.
Medieval County of Staffordshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SK255233
Latitude 52.80516° Longitude -1.62196°

Burton Upon Trent Castle has been described as a Timber Castle although is doubtful that it was such.

There are no visible remains.


Henry de Ferrers, says Domesday Book, has half a hide in Burton, in which his castle sits. There is not now the slightest trace of any castle at Burton-on-Trent, which is the Burton in question. There is no mention in history of a castle at Burton; nor do the rather detailed charters in the Monasticon relating to Burton make any allusion to a castle. Moreover the abbot of Burton held the whole town, by the gift of Wulfric Sprot, long before the Conquest; and in Henry I's time he had the full feudal court which one would expect to find in the hands of the castellan, if there were one. Erdswick thought that the Domesday scribe had made a slip, and entered Henry de Ferrers's castle of Tutbury, which is only five miles off, for Burton. Tutbury Castle, however, is mentioned in its own place. (Armitage, 1904)

Eyton says that at Domesday, Burton was a district as well as a town, and included what is now the parish of Tutbury. (PastScape)

Camden records Burton as having had a castle of the Ferrars (Ferrariorum castro) but is probably just working from Domesday. Recorded royal visits to Burton seem to have used the Abbey.
It is usually suggested that the mention of castle of Burt is probably an error for Burg of Tutbury (King footnotes this suggestion but records Burton as a vanished castle). However, Burton was an important crossing of the Trent and most other crossing points of this strategical important river did have castles. The place-name Burton means 'a settlement at a fortified place' and dates from the C8, no remains of any Saxon defences have been found. It is suggested these defences were of the monastic site but is that actual so and what state were these possible Saxon fortifications in in C11? Could they have been utilised for a short-lived castle? Any 'castle' based on one of the islands in the Trent at this point would be naturally defensible and archaeological remains are likely to have been destroyed, or at least well hidden, by alluvial erosion and deposits. However, the tenurial history, as given by Armitage and the VCH, is clearly not suggestive of a castle here and it does seem the Domesday Book reference is to the castellry of Tutbury Castle.
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:20:09

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