Bedale Castle

Has been described as a Questionable Masonry Castle, and also as a Questionable Fortified Manor House

There are no visible remains

NameBedale Castle
Alternative Names
Historic CountryYorkshire
Modern AuthorityNorth Yorkshire
1974 AuthorityNorth Yorkshire
Civil ParishBedale

King writes 'persistently credited with castle on no evidence at all'. Salter writes castle of about 1300, foundations were visible in mid C19. Jackson say was more a hunting lodge thought to be founded by Brian fitz Alan prior to his death in 1305 and to have been abandoned before 1340. In 1859 a visitor noted that 'Extensive foundations lie beneath the surface of the gardens of Bedale Hall where the castle is said to have stood.' Site now covered by road.

Brian son of Alan had a park here in the time of King John. (VCH ref. Plac. de Quo Warr. (Rec. Com.), 186)

Gatehouse Comments

King over states the position. The FitzAlans were an important family of soldiers occasional holding office as county Sheriff. Brian was custodian of Scotland from 1297. Bedale was a major manor of theirs with a park and will have had a substantial house for which foundations were found. It is highly likely this house will have had the full panoply of martial architectural decoration including crenellations. See also the fortifications added to the parish church of St Gregory. However, it is an open question as to if this made the house a 'castle'. The location, beside the church, suggests this was more than a hunting lodge, although the adjacent park will have been a focus for the house.

- Philip Davis

Not scheduled

Not Listed

Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceSE265884
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  • Salter, Mike, 2001, The Castles and Tower Houses of Yorkshire (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 20
  • Jackson, M.J., 2001, Castles of North Yorkshire (Carlisle) p. 1-2
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2 p. 533 (reject)
  • Page, Wm (ed), 1914, VCH Yorkshire: North Riding Vol. 1 p. 105, 292-4, 298 online transcription
  • Harvey, Alfred, 1911, Castles and Walled Towns of England (London: Methuen and Co)
  • Speight, H., 1897, Romantic Richmondshire p. 151 online copy
  • Mackenzie, J.D., 1896, Castles of England; their story and structure (New York: Macmillan) Vol. 2 p. 208 online copy
  • Clark, G.T., 1884, Mediaeval Military Architecture in England (Wyman and Sons) Vol. 1 p. 88 online copy
  • Whellan T, 1859, History and topography of the city of York and the North Riding of Yorkshire Vol. 2 p. 102 online copy
  • Allen, T., 1831, A new and complete history of the county of York Vol. 3 p. 496


  • I'Anson, W.M., 1913, 'The castles of the North Riding' Yorkshire Archaeological Journal Vol. 22 p. 360 (reject)

Primary Sources

  • Illingworth, William (ed), 1818, Placita de quo warranto temporibus Edw. I. II. & III. In curia receptae scaccarij Westm. asservata (Record Commission) p. 186