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Stevington Castle

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Seeds; Sedes

In the civil parish of Stevington.
In the historic county of Bedfordshire.
Modern Authority of Bedfordshire.
1974 county of Bedfordshire.
Medieval County of Bedfordshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SP992535
Latitude 52.17095° Longitude -0.55230°

Stevington Castle has been described as a probable Masonry Castle.

There are no visible remains.

Description

A castle is said to have been built here by Baldwin Wake in 1281. Excavations in 1936 failed to find any remains. No significant features could be found during field investigation in 1974. (PastScape)

Of the castle erected here, in the time of King John, there are now no traces; but there is a large and apparently artificial mound towards Pavenham, and a curiously excavated field near by, called the "Seeds," or "Sedes," which points to the probable site, or intended site of the castle. (Kelly's Directory)

The site of Stevington Manor House. In 1281 Baldwin Wake was given a licence "to crenellate a chamber in his marsh of Stiventon" but no trace of a castle has been found. It is likely to be a reference to the same site as the later manor house. A lime kiln has been found nearby (HER14358) and there are associated earthworks (HER3556, 5078). The Manor House was demolished in 1872 and a new farmhouse (Manor Farm) built in 1875, with farm buildings being constructed on the site of the Manor House. There is anecdotal evicdence for the discovery of wall remnants and floors during work at Manor Farm. (Bedfordshire HER)

A Royal licence to crenellate was granted in 1281 Aug 2 (Click on the date for details of this licence.).

Comments

Site close to church. In flood plain of River Great Ouse and features possible lost in alluvial deposits. Licence to crenellate issued 1281 but Baldwin died shortly afterwards and it seems probably that little work was done although he did leave an adult son.
A mound, know as Tainter Hill, at SP983544 has been suggested as a site of Baldwin's castle, but this seems to be a natural knoll somewhat altered by lynchets. The licence to crenellate specifically states 'in the marsh' so the site must have be in the flood plain of the river.
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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This record last updated before 1 February 2016

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