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Yorkshire's Secret Castles (Paperback)

A Concise Guide and Companion

Local History Yorkshire and Humberside

By Paul C Levitt
Imprint: Pen & Sword History
Pages: 147
ISBN: 9781526706201
Published: 29th November 2017

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There is no single event in the history of our nation that has impacted society as profoundly as the Norman Conquest. These were brutal times and revolts prompted the erection of a large number of timber and earth castles, the majority being built between 1071 and 1145. Yorkshire has many examples and this book goes in search of sites that represent the earliest feudal stamp of the Normans on the county’s landscape. Many are situated off the beaten track and command superb views of outstandingly beautiful countryside, while others are close to populated areas. In some instances, the visible remains have long since blended into the local scenery due to land cultivation, decay, neglect, vandalism, or uncaring (or unwitting) civil engineering works. A few were subsequently development in stone, but the majority remain obscure and go largely unnoticed by all but the most informed visitor. Indeed, many locals are blissfully unaware of what once existed on their very own doorsteps. Where can they be found? Who built them? What were they like? What tales can be told about their turbulent histories? What traces of them remain? Yorkshire’s Secret Castles has the answers.

From cathedrals to castles - the other amazing buildings the Normans gave us. Only this time it's secret castles, ones that have probably not survived the ravages of time, but for which evidence nevertheless remains. A brilliant book, one that celebrates the hidden beauties and secrets of Yorkshire.

Books Monthly, Paul Norman

In his Preface to this volume, the author defines ‘Secret’ castles as being those that have been ‘…Largely forgotten, neglected, concealed or encroached upon by later developments’. He also notes that ‘More than a century ago, antiquary W.M. I’Anson surveyed many of North Yorkshire’s ‘secret’ castles. This book follows in his footsteps [and]…also adds…further sites that give a broader picture for...Yorkshire as a whole’. It is a fair summation...

This volume is likely to be of interest to those with an interest in both English Medieval castles in general and those in Yorkshire in particular. Historians researching ‘English’ history may also find the information contained there-in of interest (the qualifications given above notwithstanding). Day Trippers travelling within the County may also find it a useful guide. Wargamers with a specific interest in the ‘English’ Medieval era may also find the castle site-maps useful.

NZ Crown Mines

About Paul C Levitt

Born into a military family in the historic market town of Beverley, East Yorkshire, Paul C. Levitt has always been intrigued by the past. He developed a keen awareness of Yorkshire’s rich heritage as a schoolboy and developed a particular interest in the medieval period. Yorkshire’s unique landscape and especially the North York Moors made a strong impression on him and to this day remains a magical place. He has written professionally on a wide range of subjects for the past 25 years.

Perfect Partner

A History of the South Yorkshire Countryside (Paperback)

South Yorkshire has some of the most varied countryside in England, ranging from the Pennine moors and the wooded hills and valleys in the west to the estate villages on the magnesian limestone escarpment and the lowlands in the east. Each of these different landscapes has been shaped by human activities over the centuries. This book tells the story of how the present landscape was created. It looks at buildings, fields, woods and moorland, navigable rivers and industrial remains, and the intriguing place-names that are associated with them.

By David Hey

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