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Title Northampton Castle Site
Description As you walk towards the town centre from the train station, a lone green doorway can be spotted in the wall on the left. This doorway is a postern, the only remaining feature from Northampton Castle which was the site of Thomas Becket’s trial in 1164.

Becket, who was the Archbishop of Canterbury, was called to Northampton Castle by King Henry II to face charges before a Great Council of contempt of Royal Authority and malfeasance in the Chancellor’s Office.

After being found guilty on all charges, Becket fled to France and legend has it that he made his getaway using some of the many cellars and tunnels that are rumoured to run beneath Hazelrigg House and St Peter’s Church, both on Marefair. His stay of execution lasted just four years - he was assassinated at Canterbury Cathedral in 1170.

Today, the castle’s presence can be seen in the window of the Northampton train station’s main concourse and in a mural and 3D map at the back of the station. As you walk toward the town centre, past the green postern gate, you will find a sequence of wooden knights guarding the thin slice of the castle mound which remains visible.

And although the structure of Northampton Castle has been lost over the centuries, using the power of virtual reality, you can still step inside the walls of Northampton Castle and see what life was like. To do this, you will need access to a virtual reality headset and then download either the ‘Northampton Castle VR Tour’ or the ‘Northampton Castle VR Tour for Cardboard 2.0’ from your App Store or Google Play store.

New interpretation panels giving details of the castle, the mound and St Peter’s Church were recently installed on the existing stone plinths in area and there are future plans to place signage around Spring Boroughs to create a heritage trail.