fit for a king are being revealed for the first time in centuries
as work gets underway to save Sheriff Hutton Castle.
have begun at the 14th century castle, near York, funded by £450,000
from English Heritage - one of the largest grants it has awarded
in the North of England.
five month scheme to tackle falling masonry at the fortress, once
owned by Richard III, will concentrate on the formidable 100 foot
high north-east tower, worst effected by weathering and erosion.
view from the top
Fraser, English Heritage Yorkshire Regional Director, said: "The
structure was becoming very unsound and facing a bleak outlook,
particularly after a major fall last year.
big problem has been the mortar which binds together the ancient
stonework being washed away by rain.
combat this repairs will involve pinning back masonry with steel
rods and repointing. Hopefully that will ensure a rosier future
for this remarkable landmark."
has been erected to the tower's full height, offering masons from
specialist firm HPR Ltd stunning views of the Vale of York, possibly
not seen since the castle became a ruin.
built by Lord John Nevill of Raby, the fortress was eventually owned
by Richard III, whose son is buried in the village church. It was
also used by the Council of the North until the 16th century.
1940 it has been in the family of Dr Richard Haworth and the only
previous repairs were carried out in the early 19th century.
chance for study
are using the scaffolding to explore high level narrow passages
encased within the tower's thick walls, taking photographs and making
detailed drawings of what they find.
Emerick, English Heritage Inspector of Ancient Monuments for Yorkshire,
said: "This is a unique opportunity to learn more about the
castle's construction and look for any surviving floor material.
passageways are really narrow at points, so it's a tight squeeze,
but it's a wonderful chance to investigate the monument."
major repairs will be required to stabilise the castle's remaining
three towers. Discussions are underway between English Heritage
and Dr Howarth, the castle's owner.