History of this 12th-century castle...

75-150

Romans built a signal station on the cliff overlooking the ford on the River Eden, close to the road from York (Eboracum) to Carlisle (Luguvallium).

380-430

Romans left Britain.

400-600

Urien, King of Rheged, was lord of the valley of Lyvennet, a few miles west of Appleby.

630-830

Part of the Saxon Kingdom of Northumbria. An independent British kingdom of Cumbria remained in the northern Lake District.

875

Over-run by Danes under Halfdan. Orm settled at Ormside nearby.

920

Appleby founded as a Danish settlement, the name meaning ‘apple-place’.

945

Granted to King of Scotland by King Edmund of England, following conquest of all Cumbria.

1092

King William Rufus of England occupied Cumbria and installed Ivo Taillebois as first Norman Lord of Westmorland. Ivo began building first motte and bailey castle earthwork.

1100-1120

Ranulf le Meschin completed earthworks and probably built first stone keep.

1136-1157

Ceded to Scots. Hugh de Morville and his son, also Hugh, in succession granted Barony of Westmorland.

1157

Henry II regained Appleby and confirmed the grant to the younger Hugh de Morville – one of the knights who later murdered Thomas Becket, the Archbishop of Canterbury.

1173

De Morville supported a rebellion by Henry’s son, who allied himself with the Scots.

1174

King William the Lion of Scotland captured Appleby Castle in a dawn raid, aided by the garrison. The castle and tower were recorded by Jordan Fantosme in his chronicle, showing both were present. The constable, Gospatric, son of Orm and grandson of Gospatric, a Scottish Earl, was fined five hundred marks for surrendering. Hugh de Morville’s estates were forfeited. Appleby returned to the Crown.

1179

Henry II granted the castle and the Honour of Westmorland to Ranulph de Glanville, Sheriff of Yorkshire. Some time between 1175 and 1189 the keep was raised, the curtain walls rebuilt in stone, and a great hall was built at the eastern end of the bailey.

1189

Richard the Lionheart took the castle back into royal possession and rebuilt the bridge over the moat in 1198.

1203

King John gave the Barony of Westmorland, including the castle, to his henchman Robert de Vipont, nephew of Hugh de Morville, whose family held it for 100 years. The round tower on the north side dates from this period.

1263-64

The second Robert de Vipont took part in Simon de Montfort’s rebellion against Henry III. He died a rebel in 1264 and his estates were seized by King Henry III. His daughters Isabella and Idonea were placed under the King’s guardianship.

1265

Wardship of Isabella was granted to Roger Clifford the elder – who obtained pardon for treason of his ward’s father.

1268

Roger Clifford the younger, who married Isabella de Vipont by 1275, was in possession of Appleby Castle and the manor of Brougham, while Roger de Leyburn, husband of Idonea, held Brough and Pendragon.

1300

Edward I visited Appleby, lodging at the friary.

1314

Robert Clifford, first Lord Clifford, one of the English commanders, was killed at Bannockburn.

1314-1322

During Scottish raids, Appleby town was burnt - the castle held out against Scots in four attacks.

1322-1323

Roger, second Lord Clifford, rebelled against King Edward II and was wounded and captured. He escaped execution but his lands were forfeited. Appleby Castle was briefly held by Andrew de Harcla before his execution for treason.

1327

King Edward II was overthrown and succeeded by his son King Edward III. Peace with Scotland. Robert, 3rd Lord Clifford, brother of Roger, was restored to family estates, including Appleby Castle.

1333

Death of Idonea de Leyburn without children. Her lands passed to Robert Clifford, who entertained King Edward Balliol of Scotland at Brougham.

1354

Roger, fifth Lord Clifford inherited the castle and carried out further works there.

1388

During major Scottish raids, Appleby town laid waste, but the castle seems to have held out and not been captured, though it was described as ‘ruinous’ in 1391.

1391

Thomas Clifford, son of Roger, died on crusade. Appleby Castle was said to be “ruinous”.

1411

John, seventh Lord Clifford, built the great gatehouse and probably restored the rest of the castle.

1415

John Clifford fought at Againcourt. Castle was used as court and prison.

1422

John Clifford was killed at the Siege of Meaux.

1454

Thomas, 8th Lord Clifford, undertook major building works at the castle, reconstructing the great hall, kitchen, chapel, great chamber and other main rooms in the eastern range and building square towers at either end of the range.

1455

Thomas Clifford was killed at the 1st Battle of St Albans, possibly by Richard Neville Earl of Warwick (‘Warwick the Kingmaker’).

1456

John Clifford assumed his father’s lands and titles, becoming a major Lancastrian leader in the North.

1457-1458

There were further Scots raids. No assizes (Royal Court sessions) at Appleby.

1460

John Clifford killed the Duke of York and his young son, the Earl of Rutland, earning the nick-name ‘The Butcher’.

1461

John Clifford was killed in battle. Lancastrian cause was destroyed at Towton. John Clifford was attainted (declared traitor) by Yorkist King Edward IV.

1461-1485

Lordship of Westmorland was held by Richard, Duke of Gloucester (later King Richard III). Appleby Castle was probably in the hands of Sir John Parr of Kendal.

1485

Battle of Bosworth. Yorkist Richard III was defeated, Tudor Henry VII restored the castle to Henry, 10th Lord Clifford, known as the ‘Shepherd Lord’.

1523

Shepherd Lord, Henry Clifford died.

1525

Henry, 11th Lord Clifford, was made 1st Earl of Cumberland by his childhood friend, King Henry VIII.

1536

Rebellion in the North known as ‘Pilgrimage of Grace’. Henry Clifford defended Skipton and his son, Sir Thomas, defended Carlisle.

1540

Appleby was described by Leland as “a poor village, having a ruinous Castle wherein the prisoners be kept”.

1590

Lady Anne Clifford was born at Skipton, the only surviving child of George Clifford, third Earl of Cumberland, famous sea-captain and champion to Queen Elizabeth.

1605

George Clifford, 3rd Earl of Cumberland, died leaving estates to his brother the 4th Earl. Lady Anne was disinherited.

1609

Lady Anne Clifford married Richard Sackville, Earl of Dorset.

1616-1617

There was a furious dispute over Westmorland estates. King James I confirmed Lady Anne’s dispossession.

1624

Earl of Dorset died.

1630

Lady Anne married Philip Herbert, Earl of Pembroke and Montgomery.

1643

Lady Anne inherited the Westmorland and Yorkshire estates on the death of her cousin, the 5th Earl of Cumberland. However, she was unable to visit them because of the Civil War.

1649

Lady Anne at last travelled to Skipton and onwards to Appleby following a lull in the Civil War and the execution of King Charles I.

1651

Lady Anne began the restoration of Appleby Castle, inserting a cross-wall in the keep and adding the corner turrets. Civil War flared up and the castle was occupied by a Parliamentary army under the Regicide, General Thomas Harrison.

1653-55

Lady Anne continued building work in Appleby, completing the Hospital of St Anne and restoring St Lawrence’s Church.

1660

The restoration of King Charles II was celebrated in Appleby, with Lady Anne the ‘great lady’ of Westmorland.

1676

Lady Anne Clifford died at Brougham Castle.

1686-1688

The main eastern range of the castle was rebuilt by Lady Anne’s grandson, Thomas 6th Earl of Thanet, fourth son of her daughter Margaret.

1677-1849

The castle was the country seat of the Earls of Thanet (3rd Earl married Lady Anne’s eldest daughter).

1849

The 11th and last Earl of Thanet died, unmarried, in France. The castle and estate were passed to his illegitimate son, Richard Tufton, born in 1813, who became a British subject and was made a Baronet in 1851.

1881

Henry Tufton, son of Sir Richard, was created first Baron Hothfield (of Hothfield in Kent) and became closely involved with Appleby.

1962

Hothfield family sold the castle to a private buyer.

1974

Castle was sold to Ferguson International plc who used it as their headquarters. Castle opened to the public.

1997

Castle was sold to a private buyer.

2001

Public enquiry into plans for development of the castle. Foot and Mouth ravaged Cumbria.

2009

Castle was owned solely by Mrs Nightingale – the first female owner since Lady Anne Clifford.

2013

Castle re-opened for guided tours, conferences and weddings.

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