Border Castles and Towers

Prudhoe Castle 

This majestic fortress has a 12th century keep and gatehouse. It is sited in beautiful surroundings on a hillside overlooking the Tyne.

The position of the castle is very strong, standing as it does on a ridge with a drop of 60 feet to the north, and to the south and east there is a deep ravine.

The south-west approach is protected by a deep moat.

The castle was built by Odinel de Umfraville, and remained in this family for many years.
The Umfravilles, a distinguished and powerful family, incurred the wrath of William the Lion of Scotland.In 1174 he attacked Prudhoe and laid siege to the castle and vigorously attacked it, hurling huge boulders at its walls from his war machines.

All his attacks were repulsed and his forces had to be content with destroying the gardens and growing crops near the castle.

Eventually William was forced to call off the siege and he retreated to Alnwick where he was later engaged by an English force and was taken prisoner by no other than de Umfraville himself.

Eventually Prudhoe passed to the ownership of the Percies by way of marriage.

It has a ghost, of course, a ‘Grey Lady,’ who haunts the castle at nights and sometimes there can be seen mysterious white horses galloping around the inner court and then fading out of sight.

Inside, the Castle contains a fascinating exhibition of Northumbrian Castles.

One mile from Prudhoe Castle is the birthplace of the renowned engravers and artists, Thomas and John Bewick. The talented John died at the early age of 35 and Cherryburn is usually associated with Thomas.

The attractive little cottage houses displays of their work and is open to the public.

Open 1 April to 31 October. 

An English Heritage site.