Tickhill Castle open day 2022: This is when you can visit the Yorkshire ruin that's only open to the public once a year

The date of the annual open day for Tickhill Castle has been confirmed.

This year the medieval ruins near Doncaster will be open to the public on Sunday June 12 from 2-4.30pm.

The ancient monument is owned by the Duchy of Lancaster and though a newer house within the curtilage is rented, the tenants are required to give access to the site once a year.

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This year the organisers have warned that the top of the motte - once the highest in England when it was completed soon after the Norman Conquest - may not be accessible due to a land slippage which occurred in 2020.

Access is across a moat and via the barbican and gatehouseAccess is across a moat and via the barbican and gatehouse
Access is across a moat and via the barbican and gatehouse

Entry is £4 for adults and £2 for children. Dogs are not allowed. Refreshments are available.

The history of Tickhill Castle

The 11th-century gatehouse and curtain wall hide extensive grounds and a large motte where a medieval keep once stood. The manor is now a 17th-century house rented out to tenants by the Duchy of Lancaster - an estate owned by the Queen.

The original timber castle on the site was built by a Norman lord, and it was besieged by King Henry I when a subsequent owner sided with a rival claimant to the English throne. The Crown took ownership and built the curtain wall and gatehouse that can still be seen today.

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Queues to climb the motte at Tickhill CastleQueues to climb the motte at Tickhill Castle
Queues to climb the motte at Tickhill Castle
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An eleven-sided stone keep was later built on the mound, and the foundations are still visible. King John added a barbican. It was attacked against during a rebellion in 1322, and by 1362 became part of the Duchy of Lancaster, which is held by the reigning monarch.

The fortifications began to fall into ruin, and in 1614 the Hansby family leased the site, building the current house where the Great Hall once stood. They supported the Royalists during the Civil War, and the castle became a garrison again. They were forced to surrender when Parliamentary forces attacked Tickhill. The castle's defences were then destroyed by order - parts of the curtain wall were pulled down and the keep demolished. The house remained, and was remodelled in the 18th century, when more sections of the curtain wall were removed to improve the views. The grounds were landscaped and a footpath around the perimeter was added.

The outer gateway is reached by a bridge over the moat, which is still water-filled, and through the barbican - a walled passage.

Its more recent tenants have included a Doncaster Council music advisor, who lived in the house in the 1980s.