Friday, 16 August 2013

Yorkshire trip

The Gentlemen Pensioners' summer excursion this year headed over the Pennines to Yorkshire.  Our trip had a medieval theme and a busy day saw us  visit two castles and the Towton battlefield.  The castles, Sandal and Pontefract, are both in the care of Wakefield council and plans and information can be downloaded from their website.

The castles remains are fragmentary and quite a bit of imagination is required to picture them in their complete state.

This is the view looking east from Sandal Castle keep over the remains of the barbican, inner ditch and inner bailey.

From the level of the inner bailey the base of the barbican can be seen and the sally port from the inner ditch.  Sandal Castle is quite compact and the Battle of Wakefield took place beneath its walls.  A demonstration game of the battle was put on by the Lance & Longbow Society at the Recon show a couple of years ago  .

Pontefract Castle was on a much grander scale, not surprising really as it was a royal castle.

The view across the inner bailey towards the keep
 There are information boards at each stop on the tour. 

After a stop for lunch at the Lanchester household, (many thanks to Dave's wife, Lynn, for an excellent meal),  Dave took us on a brief tour of the Towton battlefield.  It was a glorious summer's day, not at all like that wintery March day in 1461 when so many died.  More information on the battlefield can be found at the Towton Battlefield Society website.  We visited the central part of the battlefield, the Dacre Cross and the slope to Cock Beck, but then had to return to the car for the journey back to Lancashire.


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