“Hidden in plain sight”
Overview of Mold Castle
The story of Mold Castle is a long and eventful tale about Lords, Kings and Princes. Unlike most myths, this narrative is one of nonfiction, even though it could easily be mistaken for a Netflix series about fierce battles between soldiers, knights and horsemen and their intrepid survival.
The story of Mold Castle begins hundreds of years ago, with a man named Robert De Montalt. Robert de Montalt, a Norman Lord, was directed by the Earl of Chester Hugh d’Avranches, to build a magnificent castle on a mound of earth that was the monumental Bailey Hill in 1072.
Lost in time, little remains of Mold Castle’s remarkable whirlwind past. Nevertheless, there once stood a grand fortress made of hard wood and stone perched on Bailey Hill. This glorious fort was distinctive in nature due to its unique positioning overlooking the vale towards the Alyn River. Mold Castle was fortified with inner and outer castle walls, otherwise known as a motte and bailey.
Over the years this legendary stronghold was home to Lords, Ladies, and powerful Kings such as Owain the Great, King of Gwynedd and for many years was known as Bailey Castle. Today, it is known as Mold Castle, a place hidden in plain site of a bustling historic town.
Although motte and bailey castles were popular during this historical era, many of them, including Mold Castle, decayed with the times, or perished into nothingness, leaving only the smallest traces of their pivotal existence.
Six facts about Mold Castle
- In 1920, the Bailey Hill grounds were opened to the public as a Park.
- The inner and outer bailey was once used as a tennis court and bowling green until 2002 and was historically used for celebrations, festivities and other music, singing and dancing events.
- Bailey Hill is home to one of the many famous Eisteddfod Gorsedd Circles.
- The historic castle was even captured by the king of Gwynedd, Owain the Great in 1146.
- At the foot of Bailey Hill resides a freestanding cenotaph in remembrance of the heroic local men who lost their lives in the First World War, Second World war and the Cyprus Emergency. The solid granite memorial engraving reads, "To the immortal honour of the men whose names are hereon inscribed who fell in the Great War this memorial is dedicated in proud and grateful recognition by the town of Mold".
- Mold Castle is an original Motte-and-Bailey castle built by the Norman Lord, Robert de Montalt, on a large region of land of approximately 2.1 hectares, now recognised as Bailey Hill and Mold Castle.
Find out more about Mold Castle
Although Mold Castle’s history has been a long and enchanting tale, the story of its grounds hasn’t finished just yet.
With a gruelling 10-year operation and a much needed Grant acquired in 2018, Bailey Hill is now in the midst of an excavation. Bailey Hills note-worthy redesign will include improved disabled access and welcoming landscaped grounds, with reconstruction works that will see the creation of an arena for events and special theatrical outdoor performances.
With a dedicated team, that includes, Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust, Flintshire County Council, Mold Town Council, the National Lottery Heritage Fund and numerous local residents, Mold Castle will will soon reach new heights of prosperity. Although COVID-19 shut operations for over six weeks, employees have recently returned to Bailey Hill, tools in hand, ready to work hard once again.
Recent discoveries at Bailey Hill have included the unexpected find of a mysterious, unidentified hidden masonry wall. Further research and unearthing of the area is expected to uncover other ancient archaeological finds, which will go a long way to further explain Bailey Hill’s captivating past.
Mold Castle is still open to the public and welcomes visitors to enjoy the grounds. With safety precautions, Bailey Hill offers a family friendly park that embraces nature at every turn. There is a play area for children and winding scenic footpaths providing fun opportunities to discover new finds and take in the far reaching views of the valleys below and the Clwydian Range to the West. Bailey Hill and the Mold Castle grounds make for a fun, educational family day out and a great diversion for a holiday day trip when out shopping in Mold.
Mold is the fascinating county town of Flintshire located along the River Alyn. The town is known for it’s backdrop of scenic beauty that includes, the awe inspiring Clwydian Range. Historic elements include; Mold Castle, St. Mary’s Church and Bailey Hill.
More Places of Interest
Flint Castle is a timeless medieval monument based in Flint, Flintshire. Home to intriguing tales of war and conquest, this sand and stone structure is one of historic importance. Although the site was once an outpost of war, it is now a splendid tourist attraction situated on the shores of the beautiful River Dee estuary.
Bailey Hill, now known as Mold Castle, is a monumental site located in the town of Mold, Flintshire. With an interesting history, this Park is under reconstruction to embrace its past and make it more accessible to visitors. With stunning views, nature and winding paths, it’s a great distraction after a shopping trip.