Just outside of Castletown, Balladoole is one of the Isle of Man’s most impressive ancient monuments.

Balladoole has been the site of many excavations that have revealed a number of significant finds including prehistoric flints, Bronze Age burials, Iron Age earthworks and early Christian lintel graves.

A Viking boat burial which dates back to between 850-950 AD was discovered in 1945 by a German refugee and a team from the internment camps based on the Island. The group were originally looking for an Iron Age hill fort but found the burial instead, lying within early Christian lintel graves, which contained a 36ft long Viking ship and the bodies of a man and woman.

In 1918, an ancient Keeill chapel dating between 900AD and 1000AD and a Bronze Age grave dating to 10000 BC were also discovered at the Balladoole site in an area now known as Chapel Hill. 

Information boards are provided next to each section of the site and for more information on the history of the site as well as dioramas of the burial and artifacts from the excavation, visit the Viking Gallery in the Manx Museum in Douglas. 

References:

Comments

Your name

Website (optional)



Address

Castletown, United Kingdom
See all sites in Castletown

Details

Founded: 850-950 AD
Category: Prehistoric and archaeological sites in United Kingdom

More Information

www.visitisleofman.com

User Reviews

Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Castle Rushen

Castle Rushen is located in the Isle of Man"s historic capital, Castletown. The castle is amongst the best examples of medieval castles in the British Isles, and is still in use as a court house, museum and educational centre.

The exact date of castle is unknown, although construction is thought to have taken place during the reigns of the late 12th century and early 13th century rulers of the Isle of Man – the Kings of Mann and the Isles. The original Castle Rushen consisted of a central square stone tower, or keep. The site was also fortified to guard the entrance to the Silver Burn. From its early beginnings, the castle was continually developed by successive rulers of Mann between the 13th and 16th century. The limestone walls dominated much of the surrounding landscape, serving as a point of dominance for the various rulers of the Isle of Man. By 1313, the original keep had been reinforced with towers to the west and south. In the 14th century, an east tower, gatehouses, and curtain wall were added.

After several more changes of hands the English and their supporters eventually prevailed. The English king Edward I Longshanks claimed that the island had belonged to the Kings of England for generations and he was merely reasserting their rightful claim to the Isle of Man.

The 18th century saw the castle in steady decay. By the end of the century it was converted into a prison. Even though the castle was in continuous use as a prison, the decline continued until the turn of the 20th century, when it was restored under the oversight of the Lieutenant Governor, George Somerset, 3rd Baron Raglan. Following the restoration work, and the completion of the purpose-built Victoria Road Prison in 1891, the castle was transferred from the British Crown to the Isle of Man Government in 1929.

Today it is run as a museum by Manx National Heritage, depicting the history of the Kings and Lords of Mann. Most rooms are open to the public during the opening season (March to October), and all open rooms have signs telling their stories. The exhibitions include a working medieval kitchen where authentic period food is prepared on special occasions and re-enactments of various aspects of medieval life are held on a regular basis, with particular emphasis on educating the local children about their history. Archaeological finds made during excavations in the 1980s are displayed and used as learning tools for visitors.