Bury and its CastleEdit
Bury is known in the Rennaissance Kingdoms only for being the land held by the Baroness of Bury, currently Aggnes.
This is, to start with, a brief attempt to fnd out what the place was like in the real 1450s (mainly from Wikipedia), and will then progress to a description of it in the RK universe.
Real Life locationEdit
Bury..... lies on the River Irwell, 5.5 miles (8.9 km) east of Bolton, 5.9 miles (9.5 km) west-southwest of Rochdale, and 7.9 miles (12.7 km) north-northwest of the city of Manchester.
Real Life historyEdit
The name Bury, (also earlier known as "Buri" and "Byri") comes from an Old English word, meaning "castle", "stronghold" or "fort", an early form of modern English borough.
Bury was formed around the ancient market place but even prior to this there is evidence of activity dating back to the period of Roman occupation. ....Under Agricola the road building programme included a route from the fort at Manchester to the fort at Ribchester that ran through Radcliffe and Affetside. The modern Watling Street,... follows the approximate line of the route.
The market town was first mentioned as a parish in AD 962.
History of the place here , including a list of the rectors and their patrons
Real LIfe locations in 1461 (or at least, old!)Edit
Bury's 'World Famous' Market, which has been on the same site for nearly 600 years; the original licence for a market was granted in 1444.
The River - look up bridges
The Two Tubs Inn is probably the oldest pub (C16?) 19 The Wylde Bury BL9 0LA
And of course, the Castle
We have Wicked Priests! In 1442 one Roger Bradley became rector, under the patronage of Sir John de Pilkington. He died in 1462 and was replaced by George Pilkington, under the patronage of Thos. Pilkington. George died in 1482 and was replaced by John Nabbs, B.Can.L, under the patronage of Sir T. Pilkington.
"A priest, George Pilkington, chaplain, was a younger son of Robert Pilkington, and was about 1462 a defendant with his brothers, Thomas, Edmund, &c., in a charge of robbery made by Peter Legh; Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 24, m. 27 d.
In 1481 George Pilkington, rector of Bury, Robert Pilkington, late of Little Lever, and others, were summoned to answer for aiding and abetting divers felonies;"
"Roger de Bradley was Rector of Bury, in succession to John, son of Henry de Pilkington ; and on his death, in 1462, George Pilkington, priest, was appointed Rector by his kinsman, Sir Thomas Pilkington, Lord of Pilkington and Bury."
I can see I need to know more about the Pilkington family. Looking back, we seem to have people marrying first cousins, bastards inheriting, cattle raids, one chap who was both a Robin Hood type AND Sheriff of Nottingham, all sorts of fun!
In 1459 thsi was not yet a castle, but a manor house. It sat in a good defensive position on high ground overlooking the Irwell Valley, on the west side of the old market place, surrounded by a moat.
"....there were six main construction phases on the site. The first phase was between 1359 and 1400 and produced a house platform surrounded by a moat."
This then got extended in 1469: ...permission by Edward IV to: "'build to make and to construct walls and turrets with stone, lime and sand around and below his manor house in Bury in the County of Lancaster, and to shut in the manor house with such manner of walls and turrets; also to embattle, crenellate and machicolate those towers." And then it got razed to the ground: by 1540, it was ruins.
What was it like? In 1753, Thomas Percival drew plans of the visible foundations of the walls of Bury Castle, measuring 600 feet (180 m) by 270 feet (82 m). In 1865, further foundations were discovered, this time of a keep or defensive tower 82 feet (25 m) by 63 feet (19 m) with walls 6 feet (1.8 m) thick.
In 1865, while excavating for a sewer on 'Castle Croft', foundation walls of the Castle were discovered three feet below the surface. They consisted of a quadrangular wall about 120ft by 113ft enclosing a massive keep. Also within the enclosure stood the fortified manor house measuring about 83ft by 63ft in the form of a parallelogram.
There are pictures here: http://atschool.eduweb.co.uk/tcsc/millennium2/Castle/Bury_Castle.htm of what it would have looked like once converted to a castle.
2 miles south down the river is Radcliffe, with another manor house that got converted to a castle
Names and familiesEdit
Radcliffe Tower was improved by James de Radcliffe
Bury "Castle" was improved by Thomas Pilkington, rather later (later than our period). However, see above: this is the guy who got himself knighted, but was also a defendant in a charge of robbery.
Real Life fameEdit
Bury is regionally notable for its open-air market. The market is known for its supply of a local traditional dish - black pudding.