Brink to Ballum. A forgotten castle in Sønderjylland (Ballum Sogn, Tønder Amt, DK)

Situated on the beach, everyone wonders: Where did Ballum Castle stand? 

Denmark and Schleswig-Holstein are rich in castles, manor houses and fortresses. However, the latter are not always preserved above ground, but are hidden underground. If the delivery is favourable, the relatively small systems are only visible in the terrain or can be recorded by LIDAR scans.

The fortress Brink near Ballum on the west coast of Sønderjylland is a special complex. Brink Castle was first mentioned in 1379. At that time the complex had a central function in the local administration of the estates of the diocese of Ribe. For castle research, the complex is also of the utmost importance due to the accounting book - a unique document containing detailed information about the administration and thus providing a comprehensive insight into the internal organisation and operation of castles of the 14th century. During the 15th century, the original castle seems to have been demoted to a larger country estate before it was dismantled in 1562.

The origins of the plant are unknown to date, but could date back to around 1300 AD. In a joint project with Prof. Dr. Rainer Atzbach, Section for Medieval and Renaissance Archaeology of the University of Aarhus and the Museum Sønderjylland, the castle is once again undergoing archaeological investigation. Initially, a geomagnetic signature under the direction of Dr. Christoph Rinne of the I UFG in January 2017 produced important results. 

In 2017 several cuts were made in a four-week excavation campaign, which, in addition to numerous finds, provided important information on the trench system and the buildings. The excavations will continue in 2018. First impressions can be found at