Astley Castle

Astley Castle, an 800-year-old Grade II* listed ruin on a Scheduled Ancient Monument site, was destroyed by a fire in 1978.  Following a competition run by The Landmark Trust to create an outstanding modern landmark on the site, the successful proposal was to integrate much of the existing ruin rather than sit independently alongside or within it, creating what is now a Stirling Prize winning contemporary holiday house let and managed by the Trust.

The original rubble masonry walls were stabilised using resin anchors. Partially collapsed walls were rebuilt around the jagged edges using contemporary brick diaphragm construction. The voids in the diaphragm were filled with hydraulic lime mortar to minimise movement and cracking.

The bricks course neatly into the broken stonework edges. They are laid quarter lap, with the diaphragms bonded in every fourth course. Precast concrete boot lintels bind the walls at high level, including a "T" shaped element stabilising the junction of the 12th and 15th Century construction.

The roof structure is formed with exposed laminated timbers, and the primary beams upstand to give a level soffit to the structure. Internal floor structures use the same timber, with stained plywood boards forming the ceiling. A hanging oak staircase has been carefully detailed to expose the structure while concealing the member connections.

Project Information


The Landmark Trust


Witherford Watson Mann




Philip Vile


RIBA Award 2013
RIBA Stirling Prize 2013
RIBA West Midlands Award 2013
RIBA West Midlands Conservation Award 2013
RICS West Midlands Building Conservation Award 2013