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Sandal Castle & river Calder loop walk.

Updated: Apr 25, 2023

The White Shire Walk

Sandal Castle & river Calder loop walk.

Sandal Castle was built in the 12th century by William de Warenne, the Earl of Surrey, as a Norman motte-and-bailey fortress. It was constructed on a prominent sandstone ridge overlooking the River Calder and the surrounding countryside, and was strategically positioned to control trade and communications routes in the region.

Throughout its history, Sandal Castle played a significant role in the conflicts and power struggles of medieval England. It was captured and re-captured several times during the Wars of the Roses, a series of dynastic civil wars fought between the House of Lancaster and the House of York in the 15th century. In 1460, it was the site of the Battle of Wakefield, a decisive battle in which the Yorkist forces, led by Richard, Duke of York, were defeated by the Lancastrians, led by Queen Margaret of Anjou.

In the centuries that followed, Sandal Castle gradually fell into disrepair and was largely abandoned. Today, only ruins remain, including the remains of the gatehouse, the walls, and the keep. The site is open to the public and is a popular destination for tourists and history enthusiasts. It offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside and provides a glimpse into the turbulent history of medieval England.

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