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Greystoke Castle

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Grey Stock; Craystock; Craystok; Greistock

In the civil parish of Greystoke.
In the historic county of Cumberland.
Modern Authority of Cumbria.
1974 county of Cumbria.
Medieval County of Cumberland.

OS Map Grid Reference: NY435309
Latitude 54.66998° Longitude -2.87705°

Greystoke Castle has been described as a certain Masonry Castle.

There are masonry ruins/remnants remains.

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


Castle rebuilt as a country house. On a medieval site incorporating parts of the building licensed to crenellate 1353, for the Greystock family. Damaged during the Civil War, partly rebuilt in late C17 and refronted 1710 for the Howard family, with mid C18 alterations for 10th Duke of Norfolk. 1789 wing and further alterations for the 11th Duke of Norfolk; extensive refacing dated 1839 on lead rainwater heads (completed 1846) by Anthony Salvin for Henry Howard, and further work by Salvin after a fire in 1868, for the same owner; mid C20 restoration for Stafford Howard. Mixed pink and yellow sandstone ashlar, the earlier parts large blocks of sandstone rubble, with string courses and battlemented parapets; graduated slate roof, flat on tower; banded red sandstone ashlar chimney stacks. Left 2-storey, 9-bay wing with rear angled central 4-storey rectangular tower and projecting right wing of numerous bays, which has been reduced to a single storey and built around a small courtyard. The left wing appears to be almost completely Salvin's work, but is within earlier gable end walls. Central 2-storey porch and projecting end bays. Porch has flat-headed chamfered-surround doorway with hoodmould, under a large mullion-and-transomed window, the parapet carved with Howard coat-of-arms flanked by constituent family arms. Recessed bays and projections have irregular large mullioned-and-transomed windows. Parapet finials are heraldic supporters with pendants. The right wing projects in 2 stages; the first stage a single bay with a small angle turret; the second stage has an angled wall with 3 blocked Gothic windows under hoodmoulds, the remainder of the wall with slit vents. Left return wall of the main wing is partly medieval; a right-angled buttress has a shouldered-arched doorway leading into a small mural chamber; a further parallel buttress has a blocked shouldered-arched upper-floor doorway, the recess filled with an unusual inscribed socket stone. The rear of this wing has again been refaced by Salvin but its irregularity suggests earlier walls within. 2 storeys, 3 bays with right recessed bay and end projecting bay. Various mullioned windows with cusped heads, a left canted bay window and right 2-storey bay window. The tower has 2 medieval storeys over a vaulted basement, with a further 2 storeys added, with battlements, in late C18; C18 Gothic windows, those on upper floors 2-light with trefoil heads. 1789 wing, now single-storey: C19 2-light stone-mullioned windows and base of polygonal angle tower. Part of the courtyard wall retains a blocked upper-floor pointed-arched window. The remainder of the courtyard filled with C20 garages, woodstore, storerooms and toilets. Interior is Salvin's work after the fire. (Listed Building Report)

Greystoke Castle - Licence to crenellate was given in 1353 and three towers were built one of which still stands at the S.W. end. The other two were destroyed by General Lambert's Army in 1648. Curwen states that the castle was burnt down then and rebuilt in 1675 but Lady Howard says there is no record of this. Enlarged and altered 1789, restored 1840. (PastScape)

A Royal licence to crenellate was granted in 1353 Oct 5 (Click on the date for details of this licence.).


The modern estate offers hunting and falconry as part of a range of activities and Gatehouse suspects this has always been a major part of the function of this house.
Always called a castle and a baronial house but in form now a hall between two chamber block towers but was moated around and may have been a courtyard castle.
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

Data >
PastScape   County HER       Listing   I. O. E.
Maps >
Streetmap   NLS maps   Where's the path   Old-Maps      
Data/Maps > 
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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 09:21:32

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