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HARTLEY CASTLE

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Ruins of a medieval fortified house, built as a tower house circa 1353 and extended circa 1600. The house was partly demolished 1704-35 and the present house was built on the site of the outer court incorporating some fragments. Today, only the barrel vaulted cellar of the kitchen and part of a wall, possibly a barmkin, survive. The ruins were being used as a store in 1983. The tower stands at the end of a natural spur which has been scarped to provide a 'mound' for the structures, although this has been mutilated by the present farm buildings and terraced roads. The manor, possibly with a manor house, was confiscated circa 1315 from Roger de Clifford and granted to Andrew de Harcla. Fortified in 1323 it was granted to Ralph de Nevill and later purchased by Thomas de Musgrave who received a licence to crenellate in 1353 because it had frequently in the past been burnt by the Scots. Two wings were added circa 1600 by Richard de Musgrave 'transforming it into a mansion' and it was described in 1671 as a 'stately house' which had received many additions by the present owner. These included a domestic chapel, gallery and hall. It was abandoned circa 1677 and a sketch of 1692 shows a thick, high curtain wall enclosing a square outer court, with an inner court enclosed by three and four storey buildings. By 1773 there was 'scarcely a wreck left of the castle', materials having been removed to repair Eden Hall.

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