The imposing ruins of Peveril stand high above the pretty village of Castleton in the heart of Derbyshire’s Peak District. Mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086, Peveril Castle is one of England’s earliest Norman fortresses. The keep was built by Henry II in 1176.
Peveril Castle for Visitors
Castleton became a popular tourist destination with the advent of the railways in the 19th Century, and the Duchy of Lancaster carried out maintenance work on Peveril Castle to halt its further decline and preserve it for visitors to the area.
In 1932 the Duchy gave custody of the Castle to the Office of Works, now known asEnglish Heritage. Its historical significance is evident from the fact that it is a protected Scheduled Ancient Monument, designated to be of international importance.
Today all that stands of Peveril Castle is part of the gatehouse, the perimeter walls and the remains of the keep, although the latter is relatively well preserved and many of the original gritstone blocks are still evident.
Although there is little left of the original castle now, the site and the ruins are well worth a visit. The zig-zag walk up the hill is challenging but there are plentiful benches to rest on, and the views across the valley to Mam Tor, Back Tor, Lose Hill and Win Hill are breathtaking.
Peveril sitting above Cave Dale and the village of Castleton with the mighty Mam Tor in view
A climb to the castle at the top of the hill to enjoy the breathtaking views over the Hope Valley is a highlight of a family day out in Castleton.
Displays in the visitor centre tell the story of Peveril as the administrative focus of the Royal Forest of the Peak, a royal hunting preserve since the 11th century.