Anglian and Early Medieval Period

Since Alnwick is an Anglo-Saxon name, it is probable that the original village dates from this time. Conzen suggested two possible sites for this original village. These were the present marketplace and the area that became the Castle.  If it were the later, the village would have moved to the marketplace when the Norman lord arrived in the early 12th century. (This is what happened at Mitford).

Conzen himself favoured the marketplace site. This is the junction of three Anglian trackways that led to Edlingham, Edlingham and Lesbury. It would have been a large triangular green with buildings along the sides and a stream along the Market Street side. This stream is now culverted and feeds St Michael’s Pant.

We know from the foundation charter of Alnwick Abbey that there was a chapel at Alnwick dependent on the parish church at Lesbury. This suggests that it was at Lesbury that the local Anglo-Saxon lord resided. It is possible that the Alnwick chapel was at the centre of the green since a building in that place was described in 1567 as ‘formally a chapel’.

Although there are important Anglo-Saxon sites in Northumberland, there are no remains of the time in the town.