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CastleUK Blog
January 2009
The blog page, a place where I can record and then archive my monthly updates and what's new in our hunt for castles UK.
This months castles are from Somerset, with a priory from Sussex.
December
is always busy, Christmas and time just don't seem to match up but now its been and gone and we can all look forward to the castle hunting trips to come. For us this is the best time to go, crisp under foot, maybe a little snow or just clear blue sky's, no leaves, you can see the castle and not just trees. The only minus for me is that you start losing the light for taking pictures after 3pm but the castle spotter thinks that great, more time in the hotel relaxing, not chasing just one more castle. I'm now in my 2nd blog year and it's great to be able to look back, 34 castles added, the motte fest in North Wales, the King Henry V gold noble coin found at Codnor Castle, our first earthquake, no bath for two weeks, the new computer and Vista!!, the Napoleonic legend of the Hartlepool Monkey, football the website and working, Olympics, back to Wales a land full of mighty fortifications, The Shambles Victorian village in Newent, offensive material on my Rochester Castle page, visiting HMS Victory, the Royal Navy's most famous warship. Looking back its been a bit of a year, bring on lots more castles.
Click on the pictures, for more information.
Burlow Castle Wallpaper
Burlow Castle, OS 199/TQ 530-042 Sussex England, is this months wallpaper.
The picture was taken in early February 2005, so it's one of my older pictures but it's not very often I get the chance to go castle hunting when it snows. For a start snow and my Smart car just don't go together, as soon as the wheels start to skid the ABS stops them turning, which is very safe but it means I can't go up a hill! So far I've managed to have a snow picture on the first 2 months and this is my 4th year and my 37th castle wallpaper. I also think this is a cracking winters picture, bare trees with a covering of snow but where's the castle, well the platform is to the right on top of the hill but I don't know if there's any of it in the picture, so it's a site of, up there, somewhere, indeterminate castle picture.
Nunney Castle
Nunney Castle, OS 183/ST 737-457 Somerset England, is a late 14th century stone four storey rectangular tower house, founded by Sir John de la Mare. Standing on the west bank of the Nunney Brook, the castle is of a highly distinctive design, consisting of a high main block of principal rooms such as the great hall, flanked by large circular angle towers, that provided private chambers. The site owned by English Heritage and is freely accessible in daylight hours. Little gem here, tucked away and hemmed in you feel you need to get a good picture but it's hard work. I was told by some very nice people, that the moat is the deepest in England, lovely village and church.
Farleigh Hungerford Castle
Farleigh Hungerford Castle, OS 173/ST 801-576 Somerset England, was originally an early 14th century stone manor house, founded by the Montfort family. Between 1370-80 Sir Thomas de Hungerford fortified the mansion house, built the hall and founded the quadrangular castle. In 1420-30, Sir Walter Hungerford added the polygonal outer court and a barbican to the inner gatehouse, which was flanked by round-fronted towers. The site is owned by English Heritage and is open daily, July and August 10:00-6:00pm, April to June and September 10:00-5:00pm, October 10:00-4:00pm, Saturday and Sunday November to March 10:00-4:00pm. Big old site here, inner court down to its foundations but lots to see in the outer court, the family mausoleum and the chapel of St Leonard with its wall paintings are a must.
Wilmington Priory
Wilmington Priory, OS 199/TQ 543-042 Sussex England, was originally the small Alien Benedictine Priory Cell of St Mary, founded before 1086. In the early 14th century, a southern two storey porch was added to the old hall and later in the century the porch was given a new defensive entrance, with a portcullis. The house with its plain parapets, was never embattled but a three storey drum tower flanked the north-west angle of a new chamber block. The site is leased by The Landmark Trust and can be let has holiday accommodation, the site is visible from the road. Not a lot to see from the road but it would be a great place to stop, overlooked by The Long Man of Wilmington.

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