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© Mr David Scott

IoE Number: 109274
Location: CORFE CASTLE, THE SQUARE (north side)
  CORFE CASTLE, PURBECK, DORSET
Photographer: Mr David Scott
Date Photographed: 15 April 2002
Date listed: 20 November 1959
Date of last amendment: 20 November 1959
Grade I

The Images of England website consists of images of listed buildings based on the statutory list as it was in 2001 and does not incorporate subsequent amendments to the list. For the statutory list and information on the current listed status of individual buildings please go to The National Heritage List for England.

CORFE CASTLETHE SQUARE (North side)SY 95 82, SY 96 827/122Corfe Castle20.11.59

CORFE CASTLE THE SQUARE (North side) SY 95 82, SY 96 82 7/122 Corfe Castle 20.11.59 GV I Ruins of former royal castle, built on a natural hilltop in a gap in the main Purbeck range. Late C11 origin - possibly on an earlier pre-Conquest site, altered and enlarged in C12, C13 and C14. The Keep refurbished as a house in mid-C16 and the whole structure slighted and largely demolished after the Civil War. The fortified enclosure roughly triangular in plan. The curtain walls survive in part, with the bases of semi-circular towers. Surviving walls part ashlar, part rough ashlar, part rubble. Outer Gatehouse, at south end, approached by a 4-arch stone bridge over the now dry moat. Gatehouse consists of a segmental archway flanked by bases of 2 circular towers, linked to curtain wall. Inner, south-west Gatehouse, south of the surviving structures, consists of 2 circular towers flanking a pointed segmental archway. On the left, this has dropped several feet following undermining after the Civil Wr. At north-west of the site, the remains of the Old Hall, late C11. Lower walls of this survive, with some herringbone masonry and part blocked round arched openings. At west end, remains of the Butavant Tower, early C13. Near the centre, the Keep, C12, square on plan, originally 3-storeyed - an extra storey inserted in C13. Altered in mid-C16 by Sir Christopher Hatton, - remains of Tudor windows and fireplaces survive. North of the Keep, large blocks of fallen masonry. West of the Keep, the Gloriette, a C13 first-floor hall house, with Hall and Solar over an originally vaulted undercroft. Several lancet windows survive, with deep roll mouldings. In spite of much destruction, still an impressive structure, dominating the village. A National Trust property. A Scheduled Ancient Monument No, 1. (RCHM, Monument 10. Dorset. Vol. II. National Trust Guide. Corfe Castle 1985).

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