Jedburgh Castle

Jedburgh Castle, Roxburghshire.

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Location

89 Castle Gate, Jedburgh 

Road

B6358

SatNav

TD8 6BD

Jedburgh Castle overlooks the Jed Water and was once considered one of the most important castles in Scotland, but alas it was utterly destroyed in the early 15th century and what you see today is a prison built in the early 19th century.

The castle contains a museum which is really quite interesting but if you are looking for a medieval castle, you will be disappointed.

~ History ~


1165 ~  King Malcolm IV dies in the castle.


1173 ~ Following the Scots King William the Lion's capture by the English, the strategically important castle of Jedburgh is demanded to be taken into English hands by King Henry II, which they are forced to concede to.


1241 ~ Alexander, the future King of Scotland is born at Jedburgh castle, the only son to King Alexander II.


1249 ~ King Alexander II dies, leaving his infant son controlled by the all poweful Walter Comyn, Earl of Mentieth.


1251 ~ The ten year old King is married to Margaret, daughter of King Henry III of England.  Henry seizes the opportunity to demand from his new son-in-law homage for the Scottish kingdom, but Alexander does not comply.


1262 ~ On attaining his majority at the age of 21, Alexander declares his intention of resuming the projects on the Western Isles, to wrestle overlordship of the powerful Island clans from King Haakon of Norway, which leads to open war.


1266 ~ Following a skirmsh at Largs between Scottish and Norwegian forces, with clan loyalties split between the two royal overlords, the Norwegian forces are eventually forced to withdraw north. Following the Norwegian King's death at Orkney, the Scot's eventually achieve their goal.


1285 ~ King Alexander III is married to his second wife at Jedburgh Castle, but a ghostly apparition warns of his impending death, ruining his wedding day. The following year whilst out riding alone from Edinburgh in the dark during a storm, in order to visit his queen in Fife, to surprise her on her birthday, he is thrown from his horse. He falls and breaks his kneck.


1297 ~ King Edward I of England captures and garrisons the castle.


1314 ~ King Edward II of England is utterly defeated by Robert the Bruce and the English driven out of Scotland. Bruce spends the following years removing the English from their castles and destroying them so as they cannot return.


1320 ~ Robert the Bruce captures the castle, dismissing its English keeper, replacing him with his trusted lieutenant Sir James Douglas.


1336 ~ Following the Scots defeat at the Battle of Neville's Cross, the English retake and garrison the castle.


1409 ~ The castle is retaken by the Scots, but as it is seen as a threat should it be again retaken by the English, the castle is demolished.


1410 ~ Without a castle and garrison to protect Jedburgh, the English return and burn the town to the ground. The Scots rebuild their town only for the English to return once more six years later and again burn the town.


1464 ~ The English raid the Borders, looting and pillaging the towns and villages, including Jedburgh, which is set alight.


1513 ~ The English sieze Jedburgh.


1523 ~ The walls of the houses of Jedburgh are cast down, their roofs pulled down by the English as they set the surrounding countryside aflame.


1544 ~ Six fortified bastle houses are build to protect the population from the marauding English, but once again the English return and led by teh Earl of Hertford, burn the town and slight the bastles.


1823The site of teh ruined castle is cleared and its materials used for the construction of a castellated prison.