The comprehensive gazetteer and bibliography of the medieval castles, fortifications and palaces of England, Wales, the Islands.
The listings
Other Info
Print Page 
Next Record 
Previous Record 
Back to list 

Ridgmont Castle Hill

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Rugemont Castle

In the civil parish of Ridgmont.
In the historic county of Bedfordshire.
Modern Authority of Bedfordshire.
1974 county of Bedfordshire.
Medieval County of Bedfordshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SP97333624
Latitude 52.01606° Longitude -0.58314°

Ridgmont Castle Hill has been described as a Timber Castle but is rejected as such.

There are no visible remains.


Hill known as Castle Hill since 16th century. No visible earthworks, except for some quarrying, and the area lay in the open fields until Enclosure. Unlikely therefore to be a castle site, but the name still needs explanation.
Site in Ridgmont village, known as Castle Hill since the 16th century. The sides of the hill fall away steeply to the north west and south west, but these slopes have been terraced for housing. A disused sand pit lies in its east side, and there is an area of ridge and furrow to the west of the hill.
No associated finds have been made and there are no clear documentary references to the siting of a castle here. The identification is therefore uncertain. (Bedfordshire HER)

No visible remains of this ancient castle now exist and the mound on which it is supposed to have stood has been levelled and nothing now remains to indicate its former importance (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Object Name Book reference ONB Rev 1900 Sheet 21 SW p10).
Rugemont Castle, the stronghold of the de Greys and their predecessors the Wahulls in the parish of Ridgmont. It is not mentioned before
the 12th C. (Williams sites Rugemont Castle to the "Intrenchments" at Brogborough Park Farm (see SP 93 NE 2), but as there is doubt as to the classification of the latter, the castle was possibly in the village of Ridgmont) (VCH).
There is no trace of a castle or castle mound at the OS published site on Castle Hill, a knoll at the NW end of a spur, separated from the
spur by a disused sand-pit on its E side.
The sides of Castle Hill fall away steeply to the NW and SW though these slopes have been terraced for housing. The summit is occupied by an allotment garden. No finds have been made, and no castle is noted on maps or documents held in Bedford Record Office. To the W of the knoll is an extensive area of rig and furrow. The only evidence for a castle therefore is (a) the good natural defensive position, (b) the name Castle Hill, (c) documentary evidence for the name Rugemont Castle, and (d) the proximity of Md agriculture.This is insufficient to enable classification as a castle site, though it seems probable (F1 NKB 08-AUG-1973). (PastScape)

Petre reports the site is levelled. It was on common land and he rejects it as a castle site.
Was this a site where villagers played 'king of the castle'?
See also Ridgmont Round House to which the documentary evidence probably refers.
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

Data >
PastScape   County HER            
Maps >
Streetmap   NLS maps   Where's the path   Old-Maps      
Data/Maps > 
Magic   V. O. B.   Geology   LiDAR   Open Domesday  
Air Photos > 
Bing Maps   Google Maps   Getmapping   ZoomEarth      
Photos >
CastleFacts   Geograph   Flickr   Panoramio      

Sources of information, references and further reading
Most of the sites or buildings recorded in this web site are NOT open to the public and permission to visit a site must always be sought from the landowner or tenant.
It is an offence to disturb a Scheduled Monument without consent. It is a destruction of everyone's heritage to remove archaeological evidence from ANY site without proper recording and reporting.
Don't use metal detectors on historic sites without authorisation.
The information on this web page may be derived from information compiled by and/or copyright of Historic England, County Historic Environment Records and other individuals and organisations. It may also contain information licensed under the Open Government Licence. 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.
Please help to make this as useful a resource as possible by contacting Gatehouse if you see errors, can add information or have suggestions for improvements in functality and design.
Help is acknowledged.
This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:21:02

Home | Books | Links | Fortifications and Castles | Other Information | Help | Downloads | Author Information | Contact