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Town Wall: Western Section

A Grade I Listed Building in Denbigh, Denbighshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 53.1819 / 53°10'54"N

Longitude: -3.4217 / 3°25'18"W

OS Eastings: 305088

OS Northings: 365922

OS Grid: SJ050659

Mapcode National: GBR 6M.3HBS

Mapcode Global: WH771.D9V0

Entry Name: Town Wall: Western Section

Listing Date: 27 February 2004

Last Amended: 27 February 2004

Grade: I

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 82445

Building Class: Defence

Location: Defining the old Town boundary, running W and S from the Burgess Gate to the site of the Exchequer Tower.

County: Denbighshire

Community: Denbigh (Dinbych)

Community: Denbigh

Locality: Denbigh - Castle

Built-Up Area: Denbigh

Traditional County: Denbighshire

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Denbigh

History

Construction of the new castle and town wall circuit was begun in 1282 by the newly created Lord of Denbigh, Henry de Lacy, Earl of Lincoln. Of the town walls, the main stretch, including the surviving North-eastern and Countess' towers, was probably complete by c1290. In around 1295 a further stretch was created which projected eastwards in an arc beyond the line of the original wall across a steep rock face. This salient was constructed to embrace a spring or well which lay outside the boundary of the town proper. The main castle well tended to dry up during hot summers, so the necessity of encompassing this secondary source within the defensive circuit is clear. The focus of this projection was the mighty Goblin Tower, a vast polygonal tower built over the spring on rock foundations.
During the Civil War the castle and old town were garrisoned and defended for the king by Colonel William Salesbury, a redoubtable commander known as 'Old blue stockings'. The famous siege of Denbigh under the parliamentarian generals Middleton and Mytton lasted for some nine months, during which time 'brave Denbigh' valiantly held out to much royalist acclaim (a contemporary poem describes the 'palace of Dame Loyalltie...surrounded closely with a narrow sea of black rebellion'). In the C19 various houses were built on or against the walls, and still survive in the vicinity of the Burgess Gate.

Exterior

Town walls of uncoursed, flush-faced squared limestone rubble, mostly on rock foundations and with buff-brown quoining. Most of the enceinte is traceable, and the western section is still clearly defined. Adjacent to the Burgess gate, a high section of the wall is incorporated in a small row of cottages (nos 41-43 Castle Hill), and is pierced by their windows. The wall also appears to have been used as foundations for another nineteenth century house, Saronia. Beyond this, a long high length runs up to the site of the Exchequer Tower.

Reasons for Listing

Listed grade I as a highly important surviving stretch of the late C13/early C14 town wall.

Other nearby listed buildings

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