Ayton Castle, Scarborough
Friends of Ayton Castle
Near Scarborough, North Yorkshire
   Home      News
Ayton Castle Heritage Opens Days 2018 a great success despite the weather
Angel Award from
Historic England
Meeting to decide the next steps 18 November 2016
Site Meeting with Mr Keith Emerick, Inspector of Monuments, Historic England
 Subjects Discussed
Unused stone on site:
Additional interpretation panels at the field entrances:
Increasing the height of restored walls:
Staircase to left of entrance:
This lamb loves our sign!
The Scarborough News 15 October 2015

Plans to restore the ruined 14th Century Ayton Castle are a step closer thanks to a £15,000 funding boost.

Work to stabilise and consolidate the castle walls is due to start in the next few weeks following the award from grant-giving body WREN’s FCC Heritage Fund.

Once complete, owner Scarborough Borough Council says the ruin will be safe for members of the public to visit and learn more about its origin.

Property assistant manager at the council, Alan Dargue: “We are extremely grateful to WREN for backing this project and looking forward to breathing new life into what is a fantastic example of our rich local heritage.”

The council is working with a local ‘friends group’ with a view to handing over much of the ongoing management of the site. The ruin will be removed from Historic England’s Heritage at Risk Register once work is complete

March 2015
The work on the castle is almost complete and the tower looks wonderful. This just shows what improvements can be achieved if the funds are available.

Ayton Castle was awarded an £85,000 grant from English Heritage to carry out urgent repairs to the building, in particular its stonework.

Phase one which was the development works was undertaken in April 2014. The work included surveys relating to the architecture, bats and the ecology of the area together with the production of a future maintenance plan.

Phase two work included the consolidation and pointing of loose stonework, including the back corner, infilling where necessary.  Metal grilles fitted to the openings of the under croft with one of these incorporating a gate. Ditches to be filled and the ground leveled around the area with all debris being removed. The other parts of the Castle will not be secured any more than at present. The contract includes the provision of a new interpretation board. It was agreed that it would be beneficial for a board to show the wider context of Castle Field and the lower field (with the fishponds) in addition to the castle building itself.

The castle, which is a grade 1 listed building and scheduled ancient monument, is currently on the at risk register.It is the remains of a medieval manorial centre and later fortified house complex situated on south facing, rising ground to the north of the River Derwent. Included in the scheduling are the standing ruins of a fortified house (Ayton Castle) and the earthwork remains of buildings which all lie within a courtyard, a series of wide terraces on the slope above the tower and, in a field to the south, the earthwork remains of a set of fishponds.

A local Friends’ group work with Scarborough Borough Council to develop repair and management plans to secure the future of the site, with the intention that the group can be more involved in the castle’s management.

Baroness Andrews, chairman of English Heritage, said: “It is wonderful news that we and Scarborough Borough Council have been able to find a group of enthusiastic local people to set up a Friends’ group. Ayton Castle is among the most important buildings in Yorkshire, as it is listed at grade I, but it is also on our at risk register so we must all work together to find a solution that means this very special place is safeguarded for generations to come.”

Already popular as a site for walkers, the castle dates from the late 14th century and is in the form of a Peel Tower, a combination of a fortress and dwelling. Such towers are common around the north of England, where they were a defence against Scottish marauders. However it’s likely the de Aton family just wanted to show their wealthy status through this defensive design.