Newcastle upon Tyne in Tyne and Wear, England, United Kingdom
William Heron - The Hammer of the Poor
1246 AD: William Heron has been made Sheriff of Northumberland and Keeper of Newcastle Castle. He remained in this position until his death in 1258 AD.
Heron has a duty to execute justice and raise money for King Henry III. Yet, he abuses this position to steal from the people of Northumberland and visiting traders. Word of Heron's corruption spreads.
Norwegian merchants refuse to enter Newcastle while he remains Sheriff.
Heron built an 'oubliette' dungeon deep within the foundations of this Castle, which will became known as The Heron Pit. This windowless pit was used to imprison people who committed crimes and threatened his authority.
Fear of Heron's Pit lasted for a long time. In 1301 AD, local men Henry Tod and Hugh, son of Robert de Alnemuth, were accused of killing William Hulhope. A crime of this nature was punishable by death. They were held in the gaol above the dreaded pit while they awaited sentencing. The men were terrified that they may be put in the pit and become part of its bloody history. Instead, they were pardoned because William
Developed by Newcastle University Heritage students, 2017.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Forts and Castles. A significant historical year for this entry is 1246.
Location. 54° 58.159′ N, 1° 36.636′ W. Marker is in Newcastle upon Tyne, England, in Tyne and Wear. Marker can be reached from the intersection of St. Nicholas Street and The Black Gate, on the right when traveling north. Located at Newcastle Castle. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Newcastle upon Tyne, England NE1 1PR, United Kingdom. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Heron Pit (here, next to this marker); Medieval Castle (here, next to this marker); Norman Castle (here, next to this marker); Pons Aelius (here, next to this marker); The Barbican (here, next to this marker); St. Nicholas Cathedral (a few steps from this marker); The Black Gate (a few steps from this marker); Turning Bridge (a few steps from this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Newcastle upon Tyne.
Also see . . . Newcastle Castle. (Submitted on November 26, 2018, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.)
Credits. This page was last revised on January 2, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 26, 2018, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut. This page has been viewed 137 times since then and 22 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on November 26, 2018, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.