PEVERIL CASTLE, CASTLETON
...peering over Castleton
Peveril Castle, which has also been known as ‘Peak Castle’ in the past, is a castle in Castleton, Derbyshire.
The castle stands on a hill overlooking the village, providing views across the Hope Valley and Cave Dale. It is protected as a Scheduled Ancient Monument and is also a Grade I listed building.
The castle is named after William Peverel, an allegedly illegitimate son of William I, who was granted Royal Manors of the Peak, shortly after the Norman Conquest in 1066 and so administered the Royal Forest of the Peak on behalf of the king.
The castle consisted of a small square keep, which is still standing, and curtain walls. Traces of other buildings are visible within the walls, including the site of the hall that would have been the main accommodation.
Peveril Castle provides an intriguing insight into the difficulties of building a fortification on ground of such uneven levels. Parts of the curtain wall along the north side of the site, where the earliest period of building took place, are still standing today.
Peverel's son, William Peverel the Younger, fell in to disfavour with Henry II, and in 1155, the King confiscated the Peverel estates. The castle has belonged to the Crown or the Duchy of Lancaster since, and is now in the care of English Heritage.
With its wonderful location in the heart of the Peak District, overlooking the pretty little town of Castleton (famous for the Blue John stone), Peveril Castle may not be the most inspiring of Norman castles, but the breathtaking views it provides of the surrounding countryside are unsurpassed.
See the English Heritage website for details of opening times.
Last Updated: 28 Apr 2015