Border Strongholds

Alnwick Castle 

Alnwick Castle is a spectacular Border castle dating from the 11th century but, in the course of time, it has suffered from drastic restoration. Yet it is one of the finest examples of a medieval castle.

The castle probably began as a typical motte and bailey structure with a wooded palisade and keep. They were later replaced by a stone keep and a strong defensive wall with corner towers also of stone. It was strong enough to repel attacks by the Scots in 1172 and again in 1174.

The castle passed to the Percy family in 1309 who extended and strengthened it. 

The castle is still in Percy hands and the castle is the home of the Duke of Northumberland.

The figures on the battlements are generally though to be intended to deceive the enemy, but are more likely to be decoration. Similar figures scan be seen on Bothal Castle, to the east of Morpeth.

Alnwick Castle  is probably the most outstanding castle in the whole of the Borders and one of the top castles in the country. Within, is a superb collection of treasures.

Inside there are 200 paintings to view, lavish furnishings and a vast accumulation of relics.

In the mid-19th century the castle employed a staff of 86 but now there are only 12.

There is limited parking at the Castle but it is only a short walk from Alnwick’s main car park. A wide range of amenities is available at the Castle and guided tours are provided.

The castle and grounds have been the location of many film sets including Harry Potter.

Alnwick Castle has long been associated with the Percy family.