Anglo Saxon History
Map Position

This map shows the position of locations containing 'castle, anderida' centered on Northiam in Sussex.

Map Logic

This map shows the occurrance of villages containing 'castle', the Romney Marsh is shown as at Roman times

Icon Key:
Roman Station

Locations in the South East containing the word Castle


Our interpretation of the term 'castle' found in location names in the UK is most likely derived from the latin castellum a Roman term meaning a Fortlet or watch tower. Many places ending in castle are actually descriptive of later Norman Castles in a location, but these may have been originally in areas where the early Roman fortlets were found.

As you can see, in Southern England the majority of these locations lie on known Roman roads or ridgeways, and are associated with earthworks. This implies that they were Roman fortlets that protect main routes. There are a number of these locations, especially those along the north of the high weald ridge that are not on a known road but appear as a straight line implying a road on this ridge.

Castellum were Roman military watch towers built of wood or stone and were built on major routes or borders to protect and provide warning of invaders. In the South of England, the majority would have been wooden as the forest of Silva Anderida would have provided raw materials. These map locations are usually associated with nearby earthworks in the South of England, good examples of this are Castle Farm at Mountfield with its nearby associated earthworks, this association is also found at Castle field at Winchelsea, Castle Toll at Newenden in Kent and Castle hill Brenchley among others.

Photos of reconstructed Roman Fortlet can be seen below, click the photo below to go to their page on the subject.

An artists impression of the Castellum at Hoge Woerd - Holland

The reconstructed Castellum at Hoge Woerd - Holland

Reconstructed watchtower, between Bad Nauheim and Pfaffenwiesbach, Germany.

Total Locations shown on this map is 3

Locations Shown on map
Original Name Current Name
Castle Fm Farm/House 
Roman Station
Castle Toll Roman Station 
Castlegate Fm Farm/House 

External References in no particular order :-
Original Manuscripts of the Anglo Saxon Chronicles
Online Anglo Saxon dictionary
Online Etymology dictionary
Open Domesday Book - The first free online copy of the Domesday Book
The Ermine Street Guard Roman re-enactment and research Society
The "Kent A" cadastre - page 5 - Peterson 2002
Archaeologia Cantiana Online
Romney Marsh Research Trust
Romney Marsh the Fifth Continent
VillageNet the reference guide to villages in Kent & Sussex
Global warming Flood Maps
The Anglo Saxon Chronicles
Google Maps - the core of the system
GeoPlaner - Useful site for plotting map data
Julius Caesar's Gallic Wars 55BC(Books 4 & 5)
Wikipedia - Caesar's invasions of Britain
Wikipedia - Portus Istus
The Geography of Claudius Ptolemy (Bill Thayers)
Runetree Beowulf
Bayeux Tapestry Online
The Secrets of the Norman Invasion
Chronicles of John of Worcester
Battle Historic Society
Binsted village website(Mearcredesburnan Steðe)
The Spears of Andred
Find British Archaelogical Sites
Wealden Iron Research Group


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Author: Simon M - Last Updated: 08/04/2019 14:01
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Data is derived from a number or sources including the Ordnance Survey Gazetter data overlayed onto Google Maps