Piel Castle

Aerial View of Piel Castle
View from the rocky shore of hte majestic castle ruins

Free Entry

Open any reasonable time during daylight hours. Access by ferry not managed by English Heritage


Piel Island, Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria, LA13 0QN

Before You Go

Accessible only via a small boat ferry, this 14th century fortress was built by the Abbot of Furness to guard Barrow-in-Furness against pirates and Scots raiders. Lambert Simnel, pretender to Henry VII's throne, landed here in 1487. The massive keep, inner and outer baileys and the towered curtain walls are still standing.

Read more about the history of Piel Castle.

Before You Go

Access: Piel Island can be accessed from Roa Island by a small ferry operated during the summer season. The ferry is not managed by English Heritage. Please call Steve Chattaway (Ship Inn) on 07516453784 or Alan Cleasby on 07798794550.

Dogs: Dogs on leads are welcome.

Facilities: There is an inn on the island, not managed by English Heritage. There are toilets and a shop at Furness Abbey. There's a café (not managed by English Heritage) close to the abbey and a wide range of facilities in Barrow-in-Furness.

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Plan a Great Day Out

Furness Abbey is around 15 minutes from Piel. The abbey guidebook, available to buy at Furness, includes a section about Piel Castle.  

The 15th century Bow Bridge is also nearby.

The sunrise through the conservatory at Witley Court.

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Your membership provides valuable support for our essential work, while you can enjoy free access to the beauty and inspiration of our magnificent historic places. 


About us

English Heritage cares for over 400 historic buildings, monuments and places - from world-famous prehistoric sites to grand medieval castles, from Roman forts on the edges of empire to a Cold War bunker. Through these, we bring the story of England to life for over 10 million people each year. The English Heritage Trust is a charity, no. 1140351, and a company, no. 0744722, registered in England.

How We Are Funded

Our target is to become completely self-funding by 2023. Our confidence in achieving this is based on our track record. During the past 10 years, our commercial income has doubled and we have raised nearly £60m in donated income.

  • 66% Self-generated income
  • 20% One off capital grant
  • 14% Government funding
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