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Norman Castle, Castle Camps

History of Castle

Aubrey de Vere received the manor of Castle Camps from William. It was originally a Saxon manor belonging to Wulfwin, a Thane of Edward the Confessor. The castle remained in the De Vere family until 1584 when it was bought by Thomas Sutton, who endowed it to Charterhouse, who in turn sold the estate, except castle farm and Manor in 1919. Between 1941 and 1945 a large part of the land became an airfield.

See Defending Cambridge, Mike Osborne, 2013.

Proceedings CAS 64 has a report on the fortifications of Castle Camps and the deserted village next to it. It notes that the castle was built soon after thr Norman Conquest by Aubrey de Vere as the administrative centre for his large estate which included Castle Camps and land in Babraham, Abington, Hildersham, Horseheath, Wilbraham and elsewhere. The motte is almost identical in size to De Vere main stronghold at Castle Hedingham in Essex.

The site was sold in 1558 to Thomas Skinner, a London merchant, and later passed to Charterhouse.

The deserted village probably grew up after 1066 when the castle was built.


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