Reblogged from Flickering Lamps:
It may not be the first place that springs to mind when one thinks of England’s great castles, but in the North Yorkshire town of Skipton a fine medieval castle dominates the skyline. Skipton Castle, the earliest parts of which date from the Norman period, is one of the best preserved castles still standing in England. Visitors can pass through the impressive drum-towered gatehouse to explore a fascinating building that was home to many figures involved in pivotal events during the medieval period, and that owes much of its appearance today to a formidable lady who lived there in the 17th Century.
Skipton Castle was originally constructed as an earth and wood motte and bailey structure in 1090 by Robert de Romille. Romille was a native of Brittany who had come over to England with William the Conqueror’s Norman forces in 1066, and in 1086 was awarded lordship of the estate of Bolton Abbey, which included Skipton. Romille chose the rocky outcrop in Skipton for the site of his castle due to its easily defensible position, and in time the castle became an important defence against possible Scottish invasions. To make the structure more formidable, it was rebuilt in stone.
The picture below shows the view from the back of the castle, over a sheer drop, with a river far below. This north-facing side of the castle was easy to defend – too high up for its walls to be scaled by enemy soliders, and probably out of the range of many siege weapons too.
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