‘The rich man in his castle, the poor man at his gate’: castle baileys and settlement patterns in Norman England
University of Exeter
Meetings and Proceedings
CRAHM publications, University of Caen
It is often overlooked that the castles of England were embedded within medieval settlement patterns and that their presence frequently stimulated settlement change, especially in the eleventh and twelfth centuries. In the rural landscape, many castles formed manorial cores within villages, and it was not uncommon for parish churches to be embraced within baileys or for entire settlements to be planned or re-planned around castles. There is also good evidence for the containment of rural communities within the outer defences of castles. On the urban scene too, baileys could form focal points for the establishment of markets and the growth of towns. Yet the construction or extension of baileys could also, on occasion, have a disruptive impact on communities, encroaching upon and sometimes resulting in the displacement or re-planning of towns and villages. Throughout, this paper emphasises the role of castle lords in settlement planning, and draws attention to the importance of baileys as points of contact between castles, communities and wider hinterlands.
Reproduced with permission of the publisher.
In: Flambard Hericher, A.M., Ettel, P., and McNeill, T., (dir.), Château Gaillard 21: Etudes de castellologie médiévale: La Basse cour; Actes du colloque international de Maynooth (Irlande), 23-30 août 2002. Caen: Publications du CRAHM, 2004. pp. 25-36