DescriptionBelsay is the creation of the Middleton family, over more than seven centuries. The Middletons were first recorded as owning Belsay in 1270. Although they moved out of the hall in 1962, the estate that surrounds the historic nucleus of hall, castle and garden remains in their possession. The great fortified tower that still dominates the castle was built both as a statement of family pride and as a response to the conflict and unrest in this border region between England and Scotland. Built in the 14th century, it is one of the best-surviving examples of a pele tower – a regional type of fortification built by rich families in the late Middle Ages to defend themselves. In the early 17th century, after the union of the two kingdoms under King James I in 1603 had brought relative peace, a mansion wing was added to the west side of the castle, converting it into a gentleman’s residence. An engraving of 1728 shows a formal walled garden in front of the castle, with rows of evergreen shrubs clipped into cones and balls. Another wing was added further west in 1711, visually counterbalancing the medieval tower. This was mostly pulled down in 1872.
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Further informationLink: https://www.flickr.com/photos/15181848@N02/34409332245/
Resource type: Image
Added by: Pat Thomson
Last modified: 5 years, 5 months ago
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Picture Taken: 2017-04-22T15:09:11