The Archaeology of Wallingford Castle: a summary of the current state of knowledge
chapterposted on 15.03.2016, 10:28 by Neil J. Christie, O. Creighton
Wallingford Castle survives as a complex suite of multiphase earthworks, with minimal upstanding remains, sealing a deeply stratified sequence stretching back to the late Anglo-Saxon period. Following antiquarian-style investigations in the 19th century, large-scale excavation on the North Gate site in the 1970s demonstrated how the castle expanded over the Saxo-Norman town; work in the Middle Bailey in the 1970s revealed a cob-built kitchen; and piecemeal developer-funded archaeology since the 1990s has evaluated small areas of the motte, bailey and surrounding area. In the 2000s the Wallingford Burh to Borough Research Project conducted largescale topographical and geophysical surveys and carried out targeted excavation within the inner bailey, on the ‘barbican’ area, in the Castle Meadows, and in the Queen’s Arbour. When synthesized and evaluated alongside the documentary sources, this rich archaeological record transforms our understanding of the castle’s form, and development; its place within Wallingford’s overall urban story and in the development of the hinterland; and can help us engage with medieval experiences and perceptions of these spaces and places.