Auckland Castle

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Auckland Castle
Auckland Castle
Auckland Castle is located in County Durham
Auckland Castle
Location within County Durham
Alternative names Auckland Palace, Bishop's Palace, Bishop's Castle
General information
Type Castle/Palace
Address Auckland Castle,
Bishop Auckland,
Co Durham,
DL14 7NR
Coordinates 54°39′59″N 1°40′13″W / 54.6664°N 1.6702°W / 54.6664; -1.6702
Owner Auckland Castle Trust

Auckland Castle (also known as Auckland Palace or locally as the Bishop's Castle or Bishop's Palace) is a castle in the town of Bishop Auckland in County Durham, England.

The castle has been home to the Prince Bishops of Durham.[1] for more than 800 years.

Originally established as a hunting lodge for the Prince Bishops, Auckland Castle was the sole official residence of the Bishops of Durham from 1832 until July 2012, when the castle was transferred to the Auckland Castle Trust, a charitable foundation whose aim is to begin a major restoration of the grounds and castle, and set up permanent exhibitions on the history of Christianity in Britain and the North East. Auckland Castle remains a working episcopal palace, being the official office of the Bishop of Durham.

It is more like a Gothic country house than a true castle with a military function. The Castle's Scotland Wing presently serves as the administrative offices of the Durham Diocesan Board of Finance.

The castle's long dining room is home to 12 of the 13 17th century portraits of Jacob and his 12 sons painted by Francisco de Zurbarán. The room, in which they have hung for 250 years, was specifically designed and built for them. In 2001 the Church Commissioners voted to sell the paintings which have a £20m valuation, but relented until a review in 2010.[2]

On 31 March 2011 Church Commissioners announced that plans to sell off the paintings were shelved following a donation of £15 million from investment manager Jonathan Garnier Ruffer, placing the paintings, along with the Castle, in the care of the Auckland Castle Trust.

[3] The castle is surrounded by 800 acres (3.2 km2) of parkland, which was originally used by the Bishops for hunting and is today open to the public.[4] The castle and its grounds contain seven Grade I listed buildings.[5][6][7][8][9][10][11] These include a Deer House within the park which was built in 1760. It is a large stone castellated structure and acts as a shelter for deer. There is a viewing room for people to view the deer.

History[edit]

In around 1183 Bishop Pudsey established a manor house on the site.[12][13] Bishop Bek, who preferred the town as his main residence over Durham Castle due to its proximity to hunting grounds, later converted the manor house into a castle.

After the dis-establishment of the Church of England, at the end of the first civil war, Auckland Castle was sold to Sir Arthur Hazelrig, who demolished much of the castle, including the original two-storey chapel, and built a mansion.[14][15][16] After the restoration of the monarchy, the new Bishop of Durham, John Cosin, in turn demolished Hazelrig's mansion and rebuilt the castle converting the banqueting hall into the chapel that stands today.[14][17]

In 1756 Bishop Trevor bought a set of paintings of Jacob and his 12 sons painted by Francisco de Zurbarán which still hang in the castle's long dining room today. It is possible that the seventeenth century paintings' were intended for South America. However they w never made it to their destination, and eventually came into the possession of James Mendez who sold 12 of the 13 to Bishop Trevor in 1756 for £125.

Trevor was unable to secure the 13th portrait, Benjamin which was sold separately to the Duke of Ancaster and hangs in Grimsthorpe Castle, Lincs. Trevor commissioned Arthur Pond to produce a copy of the Benjamin portrait. The copy together with the twelve originals were hung in the castle's long dining room, which Trevor had redesigned especially to take the portraits.[18][19]

Bishop Shute Barrington employed the renowned architect James Wyatt to unify the disparate architecture of the palace in the late 18th Century, including the magnificent Throne Room and garden screen. In 1832, when Bishop Van Mildert gave over Durham Castle to found Durham University, Auckland Castle became the sole official residence of the Bishop of Durham.

Culture[edit]

Auckland Castle was shown in two episodes of BBC's Antiques Roadshow in 2006.

Auckland Castle also provides the setting for Lewis Carroll's story "A Legend of Scotland". Part of the building is called 'Scotland' because it was used to house Scottish prisoners. The Scotland Wing presently serves as accommodation for the Durham Diocesan Office.

Notable structures[edit]

Image Name Listed Co-ordinates Notes Ref(s)
Auckland Castle 8.jpg Auckland Castle Grade I 54°39′59″N 1°40′13″W / 54.6664°N 1.6702°W / 54.6664; -1.6702 (Auckland Castle) Probably begun in the 12th century and completed in the 13th century. [5]
Auckland Castle 036.jpg West Mural Tower and West Walls Grade I 54°39′59″N 1°40′21″W / 54.6663°N 1.6725°W / 54.6663; -1.6725 (West Mural Tower and West Walls) First wall built 14th century [6]
Auckland Castle - Gatehouse.jpg Entrance Gateway Grade I 54°39′57″N 1°40′16″W / 54.6657°N 1.6712°W / 54.6657; -1.6712 (Gatehouse) Built by Thomas Robinson in 1760 for Bishop Trevor [7]
Auckland Castle - Chapel.jpg Chapel of St Peter Grade I 54°40′01″N 1°40′12″W / 54.6669°N 1.6699°W / 54.6669; -1.6699 (Chapel of St Peter) Built as Great Hall around 1190. Completed 1249. Converted to chapel 1661-65 [8]
Auckland Castle 6.jpg Screen wall Grade I 54°39′58″N 1°40′11″W / 54.6662°N 1.6698°W / 54.6662; -1.6698 (Screen wall) Built around 1795 for Shute Barrington by James Wyatt [9]
Auckland Castle 013.jpg Deer Shelter Grade I 54°40′07″N 1°40′00″W / 54.6686°N 1.6666°W / 54.6686; -1.6666 (Deer Shelter) Built around 1760 [10]
Auckland Castle - Castle Lodge2.jpg Castle Lodge Grade I 54°39′56″N 1°40′16″W / 54.6656°N 1.6710°W / 54.6656; -1.6710 (Castle Lodge) Built 17th Century [11]
Auckland Castle - 11 Market Place.jpg 11 Market Place Grade II* 54°39′56″N 1°40′17″W / 54.6655°N 1.6715°W / 54.6655; -1.6715 (11 Market Place) Built early 18th Century. Formerly known as 18 Castle Square [20]
Auckland Castle 003.jpg 15 and 16 Market Place Grade II 54°39′57″N 1°40′18″W / 54.6658°N 1.6716°W / 54.6658; -1.6716 (Park gate-houses) 18th Century park gate-houses [21]
Auckland Castle 17 -18 Market Place.jpg 17 and 18 Market Place Grade II 54°39′57″N 1°40′18″W / 54.6658°N 1.6718°W / 54.6658; -1.6718 (17-18 Market Place) Built early 18th century [22]
Auckland Castle -12 Market Place.jpg 12 Market Place Grade II 54°39′56″N 1°40′17″W / 54.6656°N 1.6713°W / 54.6656; -1.6713 (12 Market Place) Built early 18th Century. Previously known as 19 Castle Square. [23]
2 and 3 Castle Square Grade II 54°39′58″N 1°40′17″W / 54.6662°N 1.6715°W / 54.6662; -1.6715 (2 and 3 Castle Square) Medieval use unknown. Later Prebends' College, then carriage house. [24]
Auckland Castle - Westcott Lodge.jpg Westcott Lodge Grade II 54°39′58″N 1°40′17″W / 54.6660°N 1.6713°W / 54.6660; -1.6713 (Westcott Lodge) Built early 18th Century. [25]
Six pillars Grade II 54°39′58″N 1°40′20″W / 54.6662°N 1.6723°W / 54.6662; -1.6723 (Six Pillars) Possibly 17th Century hay shed. [26]
Garden and Drive Walls Grade II 54°39′57″N 1°40′12″W / 54.6658°N 1.6701°W / 54.6658; -1.6701 (Garden and Drive Walls) Built 18th and 19th century. Railings added 19th Century [27]
Jock's Bridge.jpg Jock's Bridge Grade II 54°40′16″N 1°40′10″W / 54.6710°N 1.6694°W / 54.6710; -1.6694 (Jock's Bridge) Built 1819, forms park boundary wall. [28]
River Gaunless.jpg Trevor's Bridge Grade II 54°40′14″N 1°40′04″W / 54.6706°N 1.6679°W / 54.6706; -1.6679 (Trevor's Bridge) Built 1757 [29]
Auckland Castle - Ice House.jpg Ice House Grade II 54°40′15″N 1°40′02″W / 54.6707°N 1.6672°W / 54.6707; -1.6672 (Ice House) Probably built late 18th Century [30]
Auckland Castle - Footbridge over Coundon Burn.jpg Footbridge over Coundon Burn Grade II 54°40′18″N 1°40′01″W / 54.6717°N 1.6670°W / 54.6717; -1.6670 (Footbridge over Coundon Burn) Built mid-18th Century [31]
Footbridge over Coundon Burn Grade II 54°40′20″N 1°39′50″W / 54.6721°N 1.6639°W / 54.6721; -1.6639 (Footbridge over Coundon Burn) Built 1827 [32]
Footbridge over Coundon Burn Grade II 54°40′17″N 1°39′41″W / 54.6714°N 1.6614°W / 54.6714; -1.6614 (Footbridge over Coundon Burn) Built 18th Century. [33]
Auckland Castle - Well head.jpg Well head Grade II 54°40′21″N 1°39′32″W / 54.6724°N 1.6588°W / 54.6724; -1.6588 (Well head) 2m high pyramid. Part of 18th Century water supply to castle. [34][35]
Cistern Grade II 54°40′22″N 1°39′24″W / 54.6727°N 1.6567°W / 54.6727; -1.6567 (Cistern) Part of 18th Century water supply to castle. [36][37]
Milestone on Castle Drive Grade II 54°40′26″N 1°39′23″W / 54.6740°N 1.6565°W / 54.6740; -1.6565 (Milestone on Castle Drive) 18th Century [38]
Park Head Gates-by-peter-robinson.jpg Park Gates and Screen Wall Grade II 54°40′27″N 1°38′38″W / 54.6741°N 1.6439°W / 54.6741; -1.6439 (Park Gates and Screen Wall) Built late 18th Century [39]
Lodge Farmhouse Grade II 54°40′37″N 1°39′49″W / 54.6770°N 1.6635°W / 54.6770; -1.6635 (Lodge Farmhouse) Built 1779 for John Egerton [40]
Stables and Barn of Lodge Farmhouse Grade II 54°40′37″N 1°39′50″W / 54.6770°N 1.6638°W / 54.6770; -1.6638 (Stables and Barn of Lodge Farmhouse) Built 1779. [41]
Stables and Barn of Lodge Farmhouse Grade II 54°40′37″N 1°39′48″W / 54.6769°N 1.6632°W / 54.6769; -1.6632 (Stables and Barn of Lodge Farmhouse) Built 1779. [42]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Castle History. Auckland Castle. Archived from the original on 28 September 2008. Retrieved 2008-08-25. 
  2. ^ "Church Commissioners vote to keep the Zurbaráns" (Press release). Church of England. 2005-09-29. Retrieved 2009-08-30. 
  3. ^ "Francisco Zurbarán paintings saved by £15m donation" (Press release). BBC. 2011-03-31. Retrieved 2011-03-31. 
  4. ^ Hutchinson, p.20
  5. ^ a b "Auckland Castle". Images of England. Retrieved 2008-08-25. 
  6. ^ a b "Auckland Castle West Mural Wall". Images of England. Retrieved 2008-08-25. 
  7. ^ a b "Auckland Castle Gatehouse". Images of England. Retrieved 2008-08-25. 
  8. ^ a b "Auckland Castle Chapel of St Peter". Images of England. Retrieved 2008-08-25. 
  9. ^ a b "Auckland Castle Screen Wall". Images of England. Retrieved 2008-08-25. 
  10. ^ a b "Auckland Castle Deer Shelter". Images of England. Retrieved 2008-08-25. 
  11. ^ a b "Auckland Castle Lodge". Images of England. Retrieved 2008-08-25. 
  12. ^ Simpson, David. "The North East England History Pages - Bishop Auckland and Surrounds". Archived from the original on 30 September 2007. Retrieved 2007-09-01. 
  13. ^ Hutchinson, p.14
  14. ^ a b Lightfoot, Joseph Barber (1892). Leaders in the Northern Church: Sermons Preached in the Diocese of Durham. Macmillan. p. 140. 
  15. ^ Dodds, Glen Lyndon (1996). Historic Sites of County Durham. Albion,. p. 16. ISBN 978-0-9525122-5-7. 
  16. ^ Whellan, p.279
  17. ^ Fordyce, p.548
  18. ^ Jenkins, Simon (2005-10-07). "London should keep its hands off the treasures of the north". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 24 August 2007. Retrieved 2007-08-21. 
  19. ^ "Bid to keep castle paintings in N-E". The Northern Echo. 2001-05-14. Archived from the original on 29 September 2007. Retrieved 2007-08-21. 
  20. ^ "11 Market Place". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-28. 
  21. ^ "15-16 Market Place". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  22. ^ "17-18 Market Place". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-28. 
  23. ^ "12 Market Place". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  24. ^ "Potting shed and garages west of Auckland Castle". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  25. ^ "Westcott Lodge". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-28. 
  26. ^ "Six Pillars 3m East of West Wall". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  27. ^ "Garden and Drive Walls". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  28. ^ "Jock's Bridge". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  29. ^ "Drive bridge over River Gaunless". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  30. ^ "Ice House to the South of Coundon Burn". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  31. ^ "Footbridge over Coundon Burn". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  32. ^ "Footbridge over Coundon Burn". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  33. ^ "Footbridge over Coundon Burn". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  34. ^ "Well head at nz 2213 5389 in high park". Keys to the Past. Retrieved 2009-08-28. 
  35. ^ "Well head at nz 2213 5389 in high park". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-28. 
  36. ^ "Cistern at nz 2221 5390". Keys to the Past. Retrieved 2009-08-28. 
  37. ^ "Cistern at nz 2221 5390". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-28. 
  38. ^ "Milestone on Castle Drive". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  39. ^ "Park Gates and Screen Wall". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-22. 
  40. ^ "Lodge Farmhouse". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-28. 
  41. ^ "Stables and Barn of Lodge Farmhouse". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-28. 
  42. ^ "Stables and Barn of Lodge Farmhouse". Images of England. Retrieved 2009-08-28. 

Bibliography[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Raine, James (1852). A brief historical account of the episcopal castle, or palace, of Auckland. George Andrews. 

External links[edit]