Not on display
The village of Brancepeth lies about five miles south-west of Durham on the road to Willington. Just to its south is the castle, above the valley of Stockley Beck. Turner’s view appears to be of the west front; an 1819 engraving after John Preston Neale shows a distant prospect from that side with the same sequence of windows, towers, and turrets.1
The medieval castle, remodelled in the late fourteenth century for the Nevill(e) family, had been purchased by William Russell, a banking and coalmining magnate, and was extensively remodelled between about 1818 and 1821 (shortly after Turner’s visit) and later in the nineteenth century.2 It is comparable in scale and style to another former Nevill(e) stronghold nearby, Raby Castle, which was one of the major objectives of Turner’s time in Durham (see the introduction to the tour). There are further sketches of Brancepeth on folios 16 recto, 74 verso and 75 verso (D12336, D12410, D12412).
See image and publication details, Structural Images of the North East, accessed 20 January 2010, http://www
.sine. .newcastle .ac .uk /view_image .asp ?digital_doc_id =4209
English Heritage listing quoted at ‘Brancepeth Castle, Brancepeth; Listed building (Brancepeth)’, Keys to the Past, accessed 20 January 2010, http://www
.keystothepast. .info /durhamcc /K2P .nsf /K2PDetail ?readform &PRN =D12181
Wilkinson 1974, p.170.