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Kingston upon Hull Town Wall

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Beverley Gate; Mamhole Gate; Hessle Gate; Myton gate; Postern Gate; Quay St Gate; Low Gate; North Gate; Sutton Town Gates

In the civil parish of Kingston upon Hull.
In the historic county of Yorkshire.
Modern Authority of Kingston upon Hull; City of.
1974 county of Humberside.
Medieval County of Yorkshire East Riding.

OS Map Grid Reference: TA09712872
Latitude 53.74341° Longitude -0.33790°

Kingston upon Hull Town Wall has been described as a certain Urban Defence.

There are masonry footings remains.

Description

Hull Town Walls; built 1321. No walling along the Hull. 4 gates and 4 posterns pierced the walls which were made of brick with an earth bank behind. It is estimated that some 4.1 million bricks were required for the circuit, those being made at the Royal Tilery owned by the de la Pole family. Turrets irregularly spaced. Strengthened in Civil War and after. Demolished 1776-1810. (PastScape)

There is no reference to defences round the town until 1321, when Edward II licensed the building of a ditch and a crenellated wall of stone and lime. The licence was supported by a grant of murage for five years, and in 1325 murage for three years was granted for the completion of the work. The king is said to have been highly pleased with the fortifications when he visited Hull in 1332. These defences apparently lay on the south side of the town, as well as the north and west, for as early as 1339 there is mention of 'the wall of the town towards the Humber'. Further grants of murage were made in 1341, for five years, and 1348, for seven years, for the inhabitants 'to wall in their town'. Both grants were also 'to complete a wall, begun by them for the safety of the town and the parts adjacent, on the water of Humber', and in 1355 murage for sixteen years was granted 'to finish their wall begun on the water of Humber'. These may well be references to a sea-wall along the Humber bank, rather than to the town fortifications. Thus it seems likely that the defences were first built in the 1320s, and that they were strengthened in the 1340s and 1350s. The east side of the town was to have no defences for some two centuries more. Despite the words of the original licence, there is no reason to suppose that the defences were built of stone. The exact nature of the work carried out in the 1320s is difficult to establish. The only surviving chamberlains' account, for the period 1 January 1321 to 1 January 1324, is much concerned with receipts and expenses connected with the defences. Digging and similar work cost £110 and included the construction of a bank and a ditch (magnum fossatum and le mote). The cost of timber, boards, and stakes or piles ( pilis) was £142, and iron for nails cost £14. A further £40 was spent on stone, tile (i.e. brick), lime, and sand, which were used for North Gate 'and elsewhere'. (VCH - which goes on with much greater detail. see reference and link below)

A Royal licence to crenellate was granted in 1321 July 27 (Click on the date for details of this licence.).
A Royal licence to crenellate was confirmed in 1327 March 5.

Comments

Lower part of Beverley Gate, excavated in 1985-6, only visible remains of late C14 town wall although much of the line is now shown in the modern paving. First murage grant 1321 followed by others throughout C14. Licence to crenellate also granted 1321 and confirmed and extended in 1327, confirmed again 1462. In a early C16 plan of the town the Beverley Gate, the main town gate, is shown as a tower capped by a spire.
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This record last updated 01/09/2016 17:58:38

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