Bury Mount is a Scheduled Ancient Monument hidden away behind the shops of Watling Street, Towcester. It is all that remains of a Norman motte and bailey castle, erected in the late 11th or early 12th centuries. It was probably built for defensive purposes because it overlooked two important roads, Watling Street (north-south) and the road to Northampton (east-west).
Previous defences in the area had been built by the Romans, and again by the Saxons (c.920 AD). Bury Mount was used for military purposes by Prince Rupert, commander of the Royalist Army, during the Civil war against Oliver Cromwell and the Parliamentarians in 1643, when 10,000 men were stationed in Towcester and nearby.
In the 19th century it was planted with Scotch fir by the Earl of Pomfret, and a cottage and barn were built into the side of the hill.
Various archaeological digs have taken place, the most recent in 2010. Unfortunately, with the removal of vegetation to allow the archaeology, the steep sides of the motte started to slump. It has now been stabilised by dumping extra material, reducing the slope of the sides, and providing a sloping spiral path to the summit.
From the top can be seen views of the Water Meadows and the Easton Neston estate to the east, the leafy course of the mill stream to the north, and the tower of St. Lawrence Church and the roofscape of Towcester to the south and west.
The known historical information on Bury Mount has been given in the "Time line chronology" page.