Castle Acre Castle

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About

Castle Acre, a tranquil rural village in Norfolk, boasts an extraordinary wealth of history. It is a rare and complete survival of a Norman planned settlement, including a castle, village, parish church and one of the best-preserved monastic sites in England, Castle Acre Priory. All this was the work of a great Norman baronial family, the Warennes, mainly during the 11th and 12th centuries.

Castle Acre Castle was founded soon after the Battle of Hastings by the first William de Warenne, a close associate of William the Conqueror. It is a superb and well-preserved example of a motte-and-bailey castle, and remains one of the most impressive Norman earthworks in the country.

The Bailey Gate is one of two stone gatehouses added to the settlement's massive earthwork defences in about 1200. The main road into the village still runs between its towers.

Access: Access around the castle is over dirt paths that are bark-chipped, and over grassy areas. The site can be slippery underfoot in wet weather so care is required. The path to the castle from the Pye's Lane car park involves a long set of steps. Access via the footpath from Bailey Street is step-free but can be muddy during wet winters around the castle's west gate. The Outer Bailey area is step-free but there are long sets of steps up to the Inner Bailey.

The castle and Bailey Gate are very close to the centre of Castle Acre village where there are a few shops and cafés, and a pub, mainly centred around the village green. Toilets can be found at Castle Acre Priory.

Guide Prices

Free entry.

Facilities

Accessibility

  • Assistance dogs welcome

Groups

  • Facilities for educational visits
  • Guided tours for groups

Property Facilities

  • Dogs Accepted

Site Features

  • English Heritage Property
  • Regional Tourist Board Member

Map & Directions

Road Directions

By Road:
Take the A10 to King's Lynn. There is a small car park off Pye's Lane at the north east corner of the castle grounds.

If not needing to use the Pye's Lane car park, the castle is best accessed via a footpath off Bailey Street (between The Old Red Lion and The Old Chapel) as this route leads straight to the castle's west gate and opens into the outer bailey.

Public Transport Directions

By Public Transport: From King's Lynn station it is 20 miles to Castle Acre Castle.

Castle Acre Castle and Bailey Gate

Type:Castle

Pye's Lane, Castle Acre, King's Lynn, Norfolk, PE32 2XD

Tel: 01223 582700

Opening Times

* Open all year any reasonable time during daylight hours.

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