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Chester City Wall

In the civil parish of Chester.
In the historic county of Cheshire.
Modern Authority of Cheshire.
1974 county of Cheshire.
Medieval County of Cheshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SJ402661
Latitude 53.18699° Longitude -2.89584°

Chester City Wall has been described as a certain Urban Defence.

There are major building remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.
This is a Grade 1 listed building protected by law*.


Follow Roman line on two sides,extending to the river elsewhere. Largely complete, though much altered; the gates and most of the towers have vanished. Murage granted 1249 and others suggest a concentration of effort in late C13 and early C14.

The present circuit of the City Walls is nearly two miles long and consists of four gates and several towers, all linked by a red sandstone wall. The north and east walls follow the original Roman foundations, which still remain in some cases, but the south and west walls were extended in the medieval period to include the castle to the south. The extension to the medieval walls must have taken place before 1121, as the Ship Gate is mentioned in the confirmation charter of St. Werburgh's Abbey. The present walls follow roughly the area of the medieval walled town, although most of the material above walk level is C18 or C19. The wall was probably originally defended by battlements to the outside, while the interior was protected by timber rails mounted on stone projections, which can still be seen at the Kaleyard gate. The north and east sides of the city wall were also protected by a ditch, which ran from Pemberton's parlour to just beyond the Newgate. Beyond this stretch, the slope of the ground was relied upon for protection. The repair and upkeep of the walls was a costly business, and was paid for by 'murage', a toll upon certain goods entering the city. The damage caused by the Civil War swept away much of the medieval work, and the walls were repaired during the reign of Queen Anne. In the C17 and C18 the ditches were filled in and the walls repaired, the medieval gates being replaced. The walls continued to be rebuilt and repaired so that the wall-walk could be maintained as a promenade. Most of the walls visible above ground level today are C18 or C19. (Cheshire HER)
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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This record last updated 20/08/2017 07:56:27

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