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Hellifield Peel

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Helefeld; Helgefelt

In the civil parish of Hellifield.
In the historic county of Yorkshire.
Modern Authority of North Yorkshire.
1974 county of North Yorkshire.
Medieval County of Yorkshire West Riding.

OS Map Grid Reference: SD85885561
Latitude 53.99596° Longitude -2.21582°

Hellifield Peel has been described as a certain Pele Tower, and also as a certain Tower House.

There are major building remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.
This is a Grade 2 listed building protected by law*.


Hellifield Peel, erected c.1440, was crenellated and moated. It had been partly demolished in 1959 (Pevsner).
The remains of Hellifield Peel, situated at SD85945557, are now roofless and in an advanced state of decay. The central range shows some evidence of 15th c. work, though the building as a whole, is mainly modern. There are no indications of a moat (Speight).
Ruins of a fortified house built in the 14th century, possibly as an aisled hall, and altered in the 15th century. Further alterations were carried out in the 17th and late 18/early 19th centuries and the building was partly demolished in 1959. Three storeyed and built of stone rubble. No visible trace of the moat survives. Listed Grade II (Listed Building Report).
By 2007 the peel had been restored as part of a Channel 4 television programme "Grand Designs". The building is used as a bed and breakfast. The website of the business includes a popular history of the building and numerous images. (PastScape)

A Royal licence to crenellate was granted in 1440 Oct 13 (Click on the date for details of this licence.).


Restored in 2005 as dwelling house although, unfortunately, the oldest part of the building, a remnant of the original pele tower, collapsed during this restoration. Prior to the restoration the building was on the 'at risk' register and collapse was imminent anyway, the intent had been to preserve this wall and the collapse was accidental.
Originally this was a chamber block (solar tower) attached to a hall, built by Sir John Harcourt. It was reconstructed by Laurence Hamerton as a self contained tower house. Although the Hamerton's were also gentry they clearly were at the top end of the gentry and had pretensions to the nobility as shown by the grand rebuild and the deer park surrounding the house.
Was open as a high end B&B until July 2016 but now, seemingly, purely a family home. The Peel was put up for sale in Spring 2016 but is no longer on the market
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

Data >
PastScape   County HER   Scheduling   Listing   I. O. E.
Maps >
Streetmap   NLS maps   Where's the path   Old-Maps      
Data/Maps > 
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Air Photos > 
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Photos >
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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*The listed building may not be the actual medieval building, but a building on the site of, or incorporating fragments of, the described site.
This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:21:27

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