In the afternoon we drove to Pevensey Castle, which only has the outer wall and castle walls.
The walk on the castle mound was nice and we had a pleasant chat with someone who was walking her dog.
The Royal Oak & Castle
pub is worthy of a visit too!
The castle has a long and interesting history:
"Pevensey Castle is a medieval castle and former Roman Saxon Shore fort at Pevensey in the English county of East Sussex.
Built around 290 A.D. and known to the Romans as Anderitum
, the fort appears to have been the base for a fleet called the Classis Anderidaensis
. The reasons for its construction are unclear; long thought to have been part of a Roman defensive system to guard the British and Gallic coasts against Saxon pirates, it has more recently been suggested that Anderitum
and the other Saxon Shore forts were built by a usurper in an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to prevent Rome from reimposing its control over Britain.
Anderitum fell into ruin following the end of the Roman occupation, but was reoccupied in 1066 by the Normans, for whom it became a key strategic bulwark.
A stone keep and fortification was built within the Roman walls and faced several sieges. Although its garrison was twice starved into surrender, it was never successfully stormed.
The castle was occupied more or less continuously until the 16th century, apart from a possible break in the early 13th century when it was slighted.
It had been abandoned again by the late 16th century and remained a crumbling, partly overgrown ruin until it was acquired by the state in 1925.
Pevensey Castle was reoccupied between 1940 and 1945, during WW2, when it was garrisoned by units from the Home Guard, the British and Canadian armies and the United States Army Air Corps.
Machine-gun posts were built into the Roman and Norman walls to control the flat land around Pevensey and guard against the threat of a German invasion. They were left in place after the war and can still be seen today."
There are descriptive plaques in the castle grounds with drawings and texts to describe the castle's history.
See also the www.english-heritage.org.uk
for details, including some nice aerial photography.
St. Nicolas Church is the parish church of Pevensey, with its daughter church, St. Wilfrid's, serving Pevensey Bay.
It is named after Saint Nicholas, the patron saint of seafarers. The Church’s origins can be traced to the Roman
occupation of Britain and is built on the original site of a Saxon or Priory church, dating from the 5th century.
The church would have overlooked the sea in its early existence, now some half a mile distant. The Church we see today
was built in its present form in the medieval period, between 1205 and 1216. The completed St. Nicolas Church
remains a splendid example of ‘Early English’, or ‘Early English Gothic’, architecture.
This castle, Herstmoncieux Castle, has nothing to do with our '1066' trail but was so near that we simply had to visit.
The castle operates as an International Study Centre for Queens’ University in Canada and is not freely open to the public;
tours are scheduled around timetables and other uses including conferences/weddings. We enjoyed a walk in the gardens.
Herstmonceux Castle Gardens & Grounds are set within 300 acres of carefully managed woodland with themed
to the rear. The 15th century moated castle embodies the history of medieval England
and the romance of renaissance Europe.
As one walks through the themed gardens you will work your way towards the woodland trails, where one can enjoy a peaceful stroll and take in the carefully managed flora and fauna of the estate. Discoveries such as Woodhenge, 300 year old Chestnut Trees, the Folly and Secret Garden as well as our Lake and Moat Walk all add to the escapism of everyday life.
We stayed only in the gardens, for lack of time, and even had to forego on refreshments at the Chestnuts Tea
Room. Maybe a next time, we love the British cream teas!
A visit to Lewes and its castle.
Lewes Castle stands at the highest point of Lewes, East Sussex, England, on an artificial mound constructed with
chalk blocks. It was originally called Bray Castle.
The castle and mound towers high over the town.
Lewes Castle was built in 1069 by William de Warenne, 1st Earl of Surrey, the son-in-law of William the Conqueror.
When the last of the Warennes, John (the 7th Earl), died without issue in 1347, he was buried in Lewes Priory. His title passed to his nephew Richard Fitzalan who was also Earl of Arundel.
Besides an obvious interest in William the Conqueror, I also have an avid interest in Simon the Montfort (who laid the groundworks for the British Parliament). He fought a batlle here.
'The Battle of Lewes was one of two main battles of the conflict known as the Second Barons' War.
It took place at Lewes in Sussex, on 14May1264. It marked the high point of the career of Simon de Montfort,
6th Earl of Leicester, and made him the 'uncrowned King of England'.
Henry III left the safety of Lewes Castle and St. Pancras Priory to engage the Barons in battle and was initially successful, his son Prince Edward routing part of the baronial army with a cavalry charge.
However Edward pursued his quarry off the battlefield and left Henry's men exposed. Henry was forced to launch an infantry attack up Offham Hill... where he was defeated by the barons' men, defending the hilltop.
The royalists fled back to the castle and priory and the King was forced to sign the Mise of Lewes, ceding many of his powers to Montfort.'
On Simon de Montfort, see en.wikipedia.org:_Simon_de_Montfort
Lewes does have a parking problem
and it may involve some driving around to get lucky.