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WALTON CASTLE

ALTERNATIVE NAME:  DUMNOC, DOMMOC
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The site of the Roman Saxon Shore fort known as Walton Castle. It was probably built between AD 276-285 and stood circa 30 metres above sea level before being destroyed by sea erosion in the 18th century. The fort was subsequently reused by the Normans who used it as the bailey for a castle built there by one of the Bigod earls, probably Roger who died in 1107. The castle was strengthened by Hugh Bigod, Roger's second son, but was confiscated and garrisoned by King Henry II [1154-1189]. In 1175-6 the castle was dismantled by Henry in 1175-76, for his new castle at Orford. However, it would appear that the walls of the Roman fort survived this demolition has they were recorded as still standing in the 18th century before being undermined by the sea. It has also been suggested that Walton Castle was one of the possible locations of Dommoc or Dumnoc, named by the early eighth-century historian Bede as the site of the first East Anglian episcopal minster, given to St Felix by King Sigeberht who ruled from 630 to 635. It was originally given that Dommoc or Dumnoc was located at Dunwich (see TM 47 Se 13), although concrete evidence for either site has yet to be provided. Moreover, it is also quite possible that this Minster never existed.

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