Talk to Men of the Stones, 10th March 2015

The History and Archaeology of Oakham Castle

The Great Hall of Oakham Castle, which was built in about 1180, is one of the country’s

most important Romanesque vernacular buildings. Over the last few years a number of

archaeological and architectural investigations have taken place which have improved our

understanding of this Scheduled Ancient Monument and Grade I Listed Building. Rutland

County Council has recently been awarded a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of £2m to

undertake a programme of improvement and consolidation work on the site. This is

expected to get under way later this year and will result in better facilities, better

interpretation and more varied use of the site, and should help to make Oakham Castle a

much more attractive and versatile cultural focus for the County.

In his talk, Tim Clough will outline something of the history of the Castle and of its

archaeology. He will draw special attention to the work of John Barber and Peter

Gathercole in the 1950s, the subject of John Barber’s Oakham Castle and its Archaeology, a new

publication by the Rutland Local History & Record Society which will be available on the

day, and to a recent architectural study of the Great Hall by Nick Hill who has proposed

an important new interpretation of the original form and subsequent development of the

building, supported by tree-ring dating.

Tim Clough was Curator of the Rutland County Museum and Oakham Castle from 1974

to 2002 and is the Rutland Local History & Record Society’s Honorary Editor. Educated at

Uppingham School, he has a degree in prehistoric archaeology from the University of

Edinburgh and is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London. He has written and

edited many books and articles on archaeology, local history and numismatics. His long

association with the county of Rutland has left him with a keen interest in and

appreciation of the county’s rich heritage.

Lecture to be held at:

The William Cecil Hotel

St Martins, Stamford

Tuesday 10th March

7.30 pm.