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Stockport Castle

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Stoppord; Stokeporta

In the civil parish of Stockport.
In the historic county of Cheshire.
Modern Authority of Stockport.
1974 county of Greater Manchester.
Medieval County of Cheshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SJ897905
Latitude 53.41346° Longitude -2.15680°

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

There are masonry footings remains.


Stockport Castle is first mentioned in 1173 when Geoffrey de Costentyn held it against his father, Henry II. In 1537, two parcels of land were granted by the lord of the manor to expand the Market Place. Leland visited the town between 1535 and 1543, noting that the castle was decayed. in 1642, Stockport was one of several Cheshire fortifications which both parties (Royalists and Parliamentarians) agreed to demolish, although it is unlikely that it was garrisoned. Prince Rupert took the town on 05-May-1644, apparently without any problems, during his march to the relief of York. The castle area was finally demolished in 1775 by Sir George Warren. A plan showing the castle's position was created in 1680, and one of the walls was created in 1775 by the Rev. John Watson. From these, it is inferred that the bailey was similar to that at Pontefract and Launceston. Thomas Kay, writing in 1896, thought that remains he had identified were those of a putative town wall, but recent studies rather suggest that they are revetment for the bailey. These are extant at 7 Mealhouse Brow and behind 11 and 13 Great Underbank. The castle probably fell into disuse in the C14, although a 'Bastille room' or castle gaol was still in use in 1537. Excavations have failed to locate any trace of the bailey. (PastScape–ref. Dent)

Dent (1977) writes, that "the nature of the motte defences is not clear." Based on a plan of the walls made in 1775 Dent suggest a large tower on the motte similar to Pontefract (but twice the size). It seems incredible that a castle of a minor lord could be of such a size. An alternative suggestion would the entire castle, including bailey and ancillary buildings was on the motte and that the town lay in the area Dent suggests as the castle bailey.
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:21:27

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