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Crowdecote Dove Mount

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Crowdycote; Crowdicote; Castle Field

In the civil parish of Hartington Middle Quarter.
In the historic county of Derbyshire.
Modern Authority of Derbyshire.
1974 county of Derbyshire.
Medieval County of Derbyshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SK10036521
Latitude 53.18395° Longitude -1.85128°

Crowdecote Dove Mount has been described as a Timber Castle although is doubtful that it was such.

There are no visible remains.


Motte site has recently been suggested at Crowdecote (Hurford and Sheppard in Guilbert 2005), situated near the River Dove and now topped by a bungalow. Along with Hartington Bank Top and Pilsbury these three possible mottes protect crossings of the Dove.. It is tempting to speculate that these three sites might have been part of an intended series of defensive works on the boundaries of the de Ferrers' lands, one in each of the three Domesday manors of Hartington, Pilsbury and Ludwell, and the now-lost site of Soham. An alternative explanation might be that Pilsbury Castle was built 1070–80, while the two smaller earthworks at Bank Top and Crowdecote were thrown up during the Anarchy. (Ash et al )

A record that has previously been accepted as referring to Pilsbury Castle appeared in a book cataloguing the collections of Micah Salt (Turner). This refers to a list of items received in 1896 from “the site of an ancient mansion, Castle Field, Crowdycote (sic)”. Following the list of relics, he states that “a passage like a cave had been made under the foundations”. Turner later referred to this excavation again (Turner 1903, 162), saying: “At Crowdicote (sic), near Hartington, there are remains of foundations of an old castle. A passage like a cave had been made under them. In it were found, about twenty years ago, a number of relics… The cottages near the spot are partly built of sandstone, evidently from the ruins.” These relics were said to include silver coins (one of Henry III), an iron arrow point, bronze key, buckle and a bronze spur rowel, among other objects. They now seem to be lost. It seems unlikely to us that this refers to Pilsbury Castle, although there appears to be no record of a Castle Field at Crowdecote.
-There are no physical signs of any excavation at Pilsbury Castle.
-There is no reason why Turner would not have named the site correctly.
-There are no cottages nearby fitting this description.
-The descriptions of the find site are inconsistent, first calling it a mansion and later the foundations of a castle.
-If the artefacts were found within the fabric of the motte, they provide a terminus post quem for its completion. Henry III was not crowned until 1216, which seems improbably late for the earthworks.
A much more likely candidate would seem to be the putative artificial hillock at Dove Mount in Crowdecote (Hurford and Sheppard in Guilbert 2005) (Ash et al )
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:20:09

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