Castle, Newcastle upon Tyne

4.5 out of 5 stars 24 Reviews

Castle Garth, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 1RQ +44 191 230 6300
  • Castle Keep, Newcastle
    Castle Keep, Newcastle
    by antistar
  • View from The Keep
    View from The Keep
    by EasyMalc
  • The renovated Great Hall
    The renovated Great Hall
    by EasyMalc

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  • EasyMalc's Profile Photo

    From where the city gets its name

    by EasyMalc Updated May 8, 2015

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    If you’re anything like me, one of the first things you’ll want to see in Newcastle is the building that gives the city its name - so what can you expect?
    Well firstly, don’t expect a Bamburgh or Alnwick Castle because all that’s left is The Keep and Black Gate.
    Northumberland has any number of castles due to its proximity with the Scottish border, and although that border is someway north of Newcastle it has to be remembered that Hadrian’s Wall came right through where the city stands today in order to “separate the Romans from the barbarians”.
    In fact, the very spot where the present castle looks down over the river now was the site of Pons Aelius, a fort on Hadrian’s Wall.
    The ‘New Castle’ was built over the top of Pons Aelius by William the Conqueror’s eldest son Robert Curthose in 1080, but it was most likely a Motte and Bailey construction.
    Between 1168 and 1178 it was re-built in stone including the Keep. The Barbican, now called the Black Gate, was the last addition to be built (1247-1250), and is where you purchase your tickets to visit the castle.
    The mid 19th century saw the arrival of the railway to Newcastle and the area around the castle was demolished to allow a viaduct to be built. The viaduct and railway line are still here dividing the Castle Keep from the Black Gate.
    Although it’s difficult to see that situation ever changing the good news is that the city has woken up to the fact something needed to be done and a recent £1.67m investment has brought the Castle and Black Gate back to life.
    The Castle Keep is the most interesting of the two buildings as you would imagine, but for obvious reasons people with mobility problems will find it difficult to get to the top for the views over the city and down to the river.
    At the Black Gate however, a lift has been installed on the outside so that the facilities on offer can be accessed by everybody. It has to be said though that there’s not so much to see here as in the Keep.
    The improvements have only just taken place, and so there’s probably some fine tuning still to be done, but overall, the experience was much better this time than it was when I last came some 10 years ago.
    I hope that the hard work and investment pays off so that the ‘New Castle’ gets the attention it should and people realise that there’s more to Newcastle than just pubs and football.

    View from The Keep The renovated Great Hall The Black Gate
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  • antistar's Profile Photo

    The Castle

    by antistar Updated Oct 14, 2014

    High up on the steep banks of the Tyne, the old castle keep still maintains a watch over the city's lifeblood. There's not much else left of the castle that gave the city its name, but the keep that guarded the bridge over the Tyne and blackgate still remain. From its vantage point high above the river, the keep gives great view of the Quayside from its ramparts.

    Castle Keep, Newcastle Blackgate, Newcastle Castle Keep, Newcastle

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  • alyf1961's Profile Photo

    THE CASTLE KEEP

    by alyf1961 Written Oct 30, 2013

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    The Castle in Newcastle sits overlooking the River Tyne.

    A Roman fort previously stood on the same site.

    The castle was built in 1080 by Robert Curthose, who was the son of William the Conqueror. This castle gave its name to the city.

    The castle was a motte (built on a artificial mound) and bailey (enclosed courtyard) type castle. It was rebuilt between 1168 and 1178 during the reign of Henry II. Additions were made to the castle during this time and again during the reign of King John and Henry III.
    Today the Castle Keep, a grade I listed building, and the Black Gate are the only parts of the Castle still standing. The keep is owned by the council but rented to “the society of antiquities of Newcastle upon Tyne”. It is a visitor attraction.
    Opening times are:-
    Monday – Saturday 10.00 - 5.00
    Sunday 12.00 – 5.00

    ADULTS £4.00
    Under 18’s free.

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  • Britannia2's Profile Photo

    The Castle

    by Britannia2 Updated Sep 23, 2012

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    The keep at Newcastle Castle is one the best surviving castle keeps in England. It was a principle strongpoint on high ground above the River Tyne and was built on the order of Henry II between 1168 - 1173.
    The castle was also the dwelling of the chief constable who commandered the garrison and was also the centre of justice administration for Northumberland.
    The castle was occasionally beseiged although construction was interputed in 1173 and again in 1174 by invasions of William of Scotland and his men. There were no further incidents until 1644 when the town was surrounded by the Scottish army for several months.
    Today the castle is well worth an hours visit - the cost is £4.00 -mid 2012) and the views alone make a visit worthwhile.
    Many steps and not disabled friendly.

    In the castle The view from the Castle
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  • yvgr's Profile Photo

    The Castle in Newcastle :)

    by yvgr Written Apr 8, 2012



    The Castle is a medieval fortification in Newcastle upon Tyne, England, which gave the City of Newcastle its name. The most prominent remaining structures on the site are the Castle Keep, the castle's main fortified stone tower, and the Black Gate, its fortified gatehouse. The Keep is a Grade I listed building, nice place to visit if you're intrested in Norman style and history. The Museum inside is very small but has some information on display.

    The Castle Keep and Blackgate can be visited today. The keep is also notable in having the main East Coast railway line running through the centre of the grounds. In particular, the battlements offer fine views over the River Tyne quayside, the cathedral and Newcastle Central station. The castle is said to be haunted and has been subject to many paranormal investigations. It featured in an episode of Most Haunted.

    Adults £4.00p

    Open 10am Monday to Saturday and 12 noon on Sunday.

    The Castle Keep The Castle Keep The Castle Keep
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  • zadunajska8's Profile Photo

    The Castle Keep and Black Gate

    by zadunajska8 Written Mar 18, 2012

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    This is the New Castle from which Newcastle gets it's name. It's not so new now of course, but it was when built in the late 11th century by Robert, eldest son of William the Conqueror, replacing the Roman fort of Pons Aelius which had stood on the site since the 2nd century AD. During the reign of Henry II the castle was expanded and this included the building of the Keep which still stands today. The barbican (or Black Gate) was added by Henry III in the mid 13th century and part of this also still stands.

    You can freely wander through the Black Gate as it forms part of the street scene of Newcastle today but it is rudely seperated from the castle keep by a railway bridge carrying trains into Newcastle's Central station.

    You can visit the interior of the Castle Keep and adult admission is £4 (at March 2012). Open Monday to Saturday 10 to 5 and Sunday 12noon to 5.

    Insided the Castle Keep there is a museum on the first floor but I think the best parts are the Ground floor Chapel and the Great Hall on the Second floor. Of course, the roof is well worth a visit for some good views across the city.

    Castle Keep Google Map

    Black Gate Google Map

    The Castle Keep The Castle Keep The Black Gate The Black Gate
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  • toonsarah's Profile Photo

    The "new" castle

    by toonsarah Updated May 1, 2011

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    There are two remaining parts of the “new” castle that gave the city its name, the Black Gate (in my main photo) and the Keep (photo 2).

    The Castle was founded by Robert Curthose, the eldest son of William the Conqueror in 1080 and was like many Norman castles of the motte and bailey type. The original would have been made of wood, and it was rebuilt in stone during the reign of Henry II, between 1168 and 1178, with the addition of a keep. During the reign of Henry III between 1247 and 1250 the Black Gate was added. When the town wall was completed in the mid 14th century the castle became isolated within the new defences, and as early as 1589 was being described as old and ruinous.

    The Black Gate is roughly oval in shape and measures 50 feet by 34 feet, and today is used by the Society of Antiquaries as a meeting place and library.

    The Castle Keep is a Grade 1 listed building, a Scheduled Ancient monument, and is open to the public 361 days of the year as a heritage visitor attraction. It is considered one of the best examples of its type in the country.

    The keep would have acted as both the principal fortification of the castle and the dwelling of the commander of the garrison. It housed, on the ground floor, a great vaulted storeroom and a fine late Norman chapel, and on the first and second floors two suites of accommodation. Each had a hall, or public room, a solar or private room and latrines. Access between floors was by the great spiral stairs in the eastern angles, and from outside by an external stair to the second floor. On the same floor was a well nearly 100 feet deep.

    There is also a virtual tour in the Garrison Room for people with disabilities who won't unfortunately be able to visit the upper floors.

    Opening Times: October – April 9.30am-4.30pm (last admission 4pm), April – October 9.30am-5.30pm (last admission 5pm)

    Admission is £1.50 for adults, 50p for children (under 5`s go free but must be accompanied by an adult)

    Black Gate, Castle Castle Keep
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  • DAO's Profile Photo

    THERE REALLY IS A CASTLE

    by DAO Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    This has to be the most overlooked piece of history in the world. Some life-long residents of the local area do not even know that the castle that gives the city it’s name is still there. A bit hard to find and a very steep walk upwards, it is worth the visit.

    Robert Curthose, eldest son of William the Conqueror built a castle here on return from a raid into Scotland. He built his “New Castle” on the site of the Roman fort of Pons Aelius. The `original was built of earth and timber and held a towering defensive position over the River Tyne. In 1095 it was seized by Norman barons under Robert De Mowbray, Earl of Northumberland, during an uprising against King William Rufus. The king sent an army to put down the rebellion and the castle of Newcastle was forced to surrender. In 1172 King Henry II commissioned Mauricius Caementarius to rebuild the castle in stone. Most of the present day castle dates from this reconstruction.

    Nearest Metro: Central station
    Location: From Central Station exit on to Neville Street, cross over and carry on down Collingwood Street turn right down St Nicholas Street, Castle Keep is behind the Cathedral.

    Opening Times: 1st October - 31st March 9.30am-4.30pm Closed Good Friday, 25th-26th Dec & 1st Jan. Last entry on 31st Dec 12.30.

    Prices: £1.50 Adults, 50p Children/Concessions

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  • sandysmith's Profile Photo

    The Old Newcastle

    by sandysmith Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    From a street just off the quayside we climbed up quite a few steep steps to reach the castle which gave Newcastle its name. Not quite so new now, it was founded in 1080 by Robert Curthose, son of William the Conqueror, on the site of a Roman fort.
    Wish those vans hadn't been parked there and the sun was the wrong angle for this pic :-S.

    the old castle

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  • iaint's Profile Photo

    The Castle

    by iaint Updated Aug 27, 2008

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    Strangely enough, there is a castle in Newcastle. Surprisingly, it is not new. 12th century - definitely not new.

    It was started as a wooden castle in 1080 by the eldest son of William the Conqueror, no less. Robert Curthose was his name. The Romans had a fort there 1,00 years earlier.

    Time constraints meant I did not go in (that, plus the sun making a very rare appearance - not to be missed). The outside looked interesting, and next time I'll check out the interior.

    The guide book tells me the views are great from the battlements - must be right, given the location.

    An interesting feature is the Black Gate - a medieval gatehouse to the castle keep with a 17th century house stuck on top.

    the Black Gate Black Gate again the keep, seen from the river
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  • clairegeordio's Profile Photo

    Black Gate

    by clairegeordio Written Apr 28, 2007

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    Built around 1247, this building used to be the medieval gatehouse to the castle. For over one hundred years it has been the residence of the Society of Antiquaries for Newcastle. The upper two stories were built in the 17th century. External viewing only.

    Black Gate

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  • clairegeordio's Profile Photo

    Castle keep

    by clairegeordio Updated Apr 15, 2007

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    This was built in 1168-78 by Henry II on the site of the 'New Castle' which was built in 1080 by William the Conqueror's son. There is quite a lot to see in the keep, including a museum, a Garrison room, Chapel and Great hall. You can also visit the roof for views over the River Tyne, but unfortunately we could not go up to the roof on our visit due to renovations, which made entry, which is usually £1.50, free.

    Castle keep chapel, Castle keep
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  • barryg23's Profile Photo

    The New Castle

    by barryg23 Written Feb 24, 2007

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    Dating from the 11th century, the Castle is one of the most historic sights in the city. The Castle was built for Robert Curthose, son of William the Conqueror, and he built his “New Castle” on over the Roman fort of Pons Aelius, the first settlement in this area. The castle was rebuilt in the 12th century in stone and a gatehouse, which still stands today, was added at this time.

    There is plenty to see inside the castle. The Great Hall is the main room and it contains information on the early history of the castle and on Newcastle’s role in significant events, such as the siege of 1644 during the Civil War. It also had a feature on the Avalons, group a who are convinced the castle is haunted and who regularly watch for ghosts here at night!

    There are plenty of staircases leading from the Great Hall to other rooms such as the Chapel and the Garrison Room. from the roof, you can see why this place was chosen by both the Romans and Normans as it’s hilltop setting, overlooking the river, would have made it a very hard place to attack.

    There are excellent views of Newcastle in all directions from the roof.

    Castle Keep Gate House Queen's Room Inside the castle View from the roof

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  • stevezero's Profile Photo

    New Castle (Castle Garth)

    by stevezero Updated Mar 15, 2006

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    Newcastle got its name from the "new Castle" founded in 1080.
    The present castle keep dates back to the 12 and 13th centuries. The keep dominates what is left of the castle, and there is still a fine Norman chapel to be seen.

    Admission is only ?1.50 and worth it for the magnificent views from the battlements.

    Castle Keep, Newcastle Castle Keep, Newcastle Castle Keep, Newcastle Castle Keep, Newcastle
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  • stevezero's Profile Photo

    Black Gate

    by stevezero Written Mar 2, 2006

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    The "Black Gate" was added to Newcastle Castle between 1247 and 1250, forming an additional barbican.
    The gatehouse was named after a 17th century tenant, Patrick Black.
    Blackgate was leased to the Society of Antiquaries in the 1880s, who extensively restored it between 1883 and 1885. The Society have held regular meetings there ever since.

    Black Gate Black Gate
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