This Day in History: 1164-04-01

In April 1164, Hamelin de Plantagenet (de Warenne) married Isabel, the widow of William of Blois. On this marriage, Hamelin would become the 4th Earl of Surrey (some historians show him as the 5th Earl, but both William of Blois and Hamelin are classed as the 4th Earl due to their marriages to Isabel de Warenne, the 4th Countess of Surrey) and took ownership of Sandal Castle. Hamelin was the illegitimate half brother of Henry II, being born in 1130 in Normandy, France, to Geoffrey of Anjou and Adelaide d’Angers. Hamelin would be responsible for the building of Conisbrough Castle  and it is likely that the first stone castle at Sandal is his work. Indeed, the de Warenne lands in England were vast and rich  and Yorkshire played a special role in their lives.