England - Famous Castles

    

As evidence of the intricate and fascinating history of England, there remain a number of well-known, well-preserved castles peppered across the countryside in their age-old splendour. Some of the most popular of these include:

The Tower of London
Being situated along the River Thames in the heart of London, this castle is one of England’s best known. It was established just after William the Conqueror arrived in 1066 of our Common Era (CE). Gradually, additional buildings were added to the complex until it was finally complete in 1097. Today, there are 21 towers that make up the entire multifaceted structure referred to as the Tower of London. Although this castle has fulfilled many roles in its extensive history, it is best known for being a torturous prison and a place of gross executions. It remains one of the top tourist destinations in London and, indeed, in all of England.

Windsor Castle
Windsor Castle continues to be considered the official home of Queen Elizabeth II and the rest of the Royal Family. It has, in fact, been continuously occupied, for almost 1000 years. However, this castle also has a dark side to its varied history, having been the prison of a number of well-known convicts. These ones were kept in dark dungeons during the time of the Saxon kings’ rule.

Leeds Castle
Leeds Castle was originally built from timber by William the Conqueror. However, it was later rebuilt using the more modern, sturdy material of stone. During the reign of King Henry VIII, this age-old castle was made into a palace for the royals. The defensive structures were retained, preserving its historical appeal and aesthetic. Leeds Castle has been built on three islands, which emerge from an exquisite artificial lake.

Knole Castle
Knole Castle is known for its unique structure in adherence to the elements of time. For example, there are 365 rooms to represent each of the days in the year, 52 staircases in symbolism of the weeks in a year and seven courts, signifying the seven days that make up one week.

Hatfield House
Known for its pristine gardens and extensive art collection, Hatfield House is considered to be one of the prettiest castles in the country.

Woburn Abbey
Once the favoured residence of Queen Victoria, Woburn Abbey gained even more acclaim as being the home to one of the largest and most varied collections of animals in all of England.

Image of English medieval castle of Arundel the seat of the Dukes of Norfolk.
English medieval castle of Arundel the seat of the Dukes of Norfolk.


Thornbury Castle
Thornbury is the only Tudor castle that has also been opened as a hotel, offering residents a charming, unique accommodation experience. It is over half a century old and exudes history, mystery and heritage.

Arundel Castle and Gardens
Perched within acres of lush, emerald foliage, this castle is the Seat of the Dukes of Norfolk. It is also home to an array of fascinating artworks and tapestries, as well as genuine armoury. The Earl’s Garden, the Fitzalan Chapel and the display of personal possessions of Mary, Queen of Scots combine to create a popular tourist hotspot and historical gem.

For more information, please view: http://www.castles.me.uk/