Brough Castle

Brough was an interesting and imposing locale. That the site has been occupied in one way or another since the Roman period (if not before, naturally, as we really do not know all too much about these times) is one fact of interest here — the visitor can recognise why this site has been so relevant, however. A high ground with a good commanding sense of all surroundings and the Romans must have thought so as well to site a milecastles here on the York-Carlisle road.

The keep at Brough

And, yet, this place was in quite a lamentable state, insofar at least as one can go and take a look around. Some of the walls were standing but none too high and none too proud, though one could sense the centuries-old will that had bound them into their shape.

I liked Brough and the day I was there was miserable enough to look like Brough belong in it — sunshine in this northern frontier would feel weird if the people who actually manned the place rarely saw our life-giver.

It’s also quite a large place and clearly stands out amongst the other castles on the A66 — Bowes is not nearly as mighty. Brougham was similar to this but in a very different setting as the Eamont and the entire ground near it looked to be quite soft, and unlike the rocky surface Brough was constructed upon.

What I can say is I am really happy with the work that was undertaken here in the 17th century by Anne Clifford because without it, we would have even less left, and there should definitely be more of Brough. Naturally, one must keep in mind here as well that if it was in a perfect state, this castle would be less poetic; however, there is no shortage of the ruined castles either way, so I do wish Brough had remained in a better state of repair throughout.

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