Friday, 2 September 2016

Visit to Scarborough Castle part 1

This summer I finally made it to Scarborough Castle.   The castle played a huge part in Piers Gaveston's life.   It was at Scarborough Castle that Piers sort refuge after returning from his third banishment.    The castle seemed ideal to withstand a siege.   It stands high above the current  town of Scarborough, on an impressive cliff face.     It should have been the ideal place to keep Piers safe.   He could have actually fled the castle by boat, if the worst came to the worst.  Instead, Piers surrendered.    So what went wrong?   It seems Piers and the castle were woefully prepared for a long term siege, and the terms of his surrender were just too good.   Piers was to surrender to Aymer de Valence, Earl of Pembroke.   Pembroke swore an oath to protect Piers.  Pembroke was to take custody of Piers while negotiations were made to try to resolve the tense situation.   If no agreement was reached, Piers would be allow to return to Scarborough Castle and prepare for a long term siege.  The conditions were very favourable to Piers, and, without the gift of hindsight, he readily accepted.

 The impressive keep at Scarborough Castle.   The main feature of the castle that remains.
                                  The view of the castle from the town of Scarborough.

                                           Information on the building of the castle.
                                                 The entrance to the castle.

There is a legend at the castle that the headless ghost of Piers haunts Scarborough castle and apparently 'pushes' people down a steep slope.  No sign of Piers and no pushing on my visit.

In my next post, I'll look more at the history of the castle and castle sieges.


Kasia Ogrodnik said...

What remains of the castle is still very impressive. In its heyday it must have been a formidable keep indeed. Had only Piers had the benefit of hindsight...

Kathryn Warner said...

Great pics! I have visited Scarborough, but when I was ten, so can barely remember it. Pity you didn't encounter Piers, though the pushing doesn't sound very nice :-)

Anerje said...

Hi Kasia - a lot of damage was done in World War 1, and the English civil war. I'll write about that in my next post.

Hi Kathryn, frankly, I don't know what Piers is doing there in ghostly form. Plus, as I've said, he'd never be seen without his head:). Still. Nothing like a good ghost story eh? Although I don't know of Edward II haunting anywhere. Not even Berkeley claim him.

Anerje said...

Actually, I'd expect a ghostly Piers to pop out and give a good insult;)

Gabriele Campbell said...

I didn't meet Piers, either. Though the day was cold and misty enough for a ghost to like it. :-)