Full Report for Listed Buildings
Summary Description of a Listed Buildings
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Dominating the town with Back Fold, Castle Lane and Oxford Road bordering the castle grounds.
Probably built by Bernard de Newmarch and once surrounded by a moat. The castle is traditionally thought to have been rebuilt by Maude de St Valerie; was burnt by King John in 1216, rebuilt by Henry III in 1233, burnt by Prince Edward in 1263 and later suffered further damage under Owain Glyndwr. The double pile Castle House was begun by James Boyle ca 1660; divided up after 1702 and in 1844 sold to Sir Joseph Bailey. Major restoration by W D Caroe ca 1910; major fires in 1934 (E half) and 1977 (W half); long-term restoration in progress at time of inspection (May 1987).
The main front faces the town to NW. 3-storeys, 7-windows; coursed rubble with freestone window dressings and Jacobean shaped gables with finials (central two missing). Stone tile M shaped roof retained to right, the hipped end is thought to be part of Caroe's restoration; roofless hall to left. Massive brick stellar chimney stacks. Mainly small pane sash windows (some missing) or similar dummy windows. Tall central window over former main entrance (reached by modern steps) with pair of fine console brackets; truncated chimney stack above beside paired horned sashes. Scrolled iron brace plates to centre right.
Former keep advanced at an angle to left end with massive corner buttresses. Late Romanesque window to ground floor and paired Tudor lights above with labels; broken down wallhead. Attached outer wall of former gatehouse, refaced in 1233 with segmental outer arch and portcullis slot; pointed 2-order arched entrance and studded timber doors, one cross braced to inner side. Battered coursed rubble wall continues to left. Segmental arch to inner side of gateway with rere arch supporting stone staircase to wallwalk and leading in to the now floorless keep with basement to front. SE face of keep retains late Romanesque twin opening under containing arch; dove holes below. Stepped forward to left is a linking bay with irregularly shaped gables, cross-frame windows and diamond leaded glazing under Tudor labels (formerly lighting the main staircase). 5 windows 3-storey SE (garden) front with similar gables to left with quatrefoil panels blocking former attic windows. Sash and casement windows and small rubble porch with pointed arch entrance.
The interior is partly gutted but retains spinal corridors with largely replaced massive studded partition, pointed Jacobethan openings and timber mullioned internal windows. Replaced A-frame pegged trusses; panelled shutters and doors; chamfered cross beams to 2nd floor. Remains of spiral staircase; dog-leg back stair and openwell timber staircase with swept up handrail - fine Jacobean staircase lost in fire. Projecting stone fireplace to 1st floor and late medieval fireplace to kitchen; late Romanesque quarter-round jambs to pointed arch entrance into spinal passage. Carved head corbels to SW part.
Cadw : Full Report for Listed Buildings [ Records 1 of 1 ]