Architecture Show: Castles

Panolyman

All-Pro
Location
Wild West Wales
Name
Brian
It would appear that there isn't a specific thread showing castles, so, as I live in Wales, which according to one of the Welsh government websites has 427 castles,
I thought I'd better start one.
Obviously, not all castles are in Wales and I think we should include chateau as well, and possibly hill forts and the like.
Anyway, I'm sure you've all got lots of examples.

I'll kick it off with this one I visited a few weeks ago.
It's known as Carreg Cennen castle, deep in the heart of rural Carmarthenshire.
It's regularly featured in tourist brochures but I'd never seen it close up before.

This was taken from around 3 miles away and is often all that is glimpsed.
2306-75 EM10:3-14:42.jpg
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We were cycling there and given its prominent postition, I was concerned that we never saw it again until we got to the lane at its foot.
2306-83 EM10:3-14:42.jpg
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Once there, you can understand its location, as you can literally see for miles around.
2306-84 EM10:3-14:42 Pano.jpg
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Even walking up the gentle slope, it's a fair climb.
2306-85 EM10:3-14:42 Xpan.jpg
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And looking over the sheer face of the south wall down to the river hundreds of feet below, its obvious no attack could come from that side.
2306-89 EM10:3-14:42.jpg
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Some of the walls are still in really good condition.
2306-91 EM10:3-14:42.jpg
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This is a view looking northwest.
2306-95 EM10:3-14:42.jpg
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It was originally built in 1277 but was damaged, firstly during Owain Glendower's rebellion and then later in 1461, during the War of the Roses.
2306-97 EM10:3-14:42.jpg
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But for almost 700 years old, its not looking too bad.
2306-99 EM10:3-14:42.jpg
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And the visitors these days are generally of a friendly persuasion.
2306-107 EM10:3-14:42.jpg
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It would appear that there isn't a specific thread showing castles, so, as I live in Wales, which according to one of the Welsh government websites has 427 castles,
I thought I'd better start one.
Obviously, not all castles are in Wales and I think we should include chateau as well, and possibly hill forts and the like.
Anyway, I'm sure you've all got lots of examples.

I'll kick it off with this one I visited a few weeks ago.
It's known as Carreg Cennen castle, deep in the heart of rural Carmarthenshire.
It's regularly featured in tourist brochures but I'd never seen it close up before.

This was taken from around 3 miles away and is often all that is glimpsed.
View attachment 398488

We were cycling there and given its prominent postition, I was concerned that we never saw it again until we got to the lane at its foot.
View attachment 398489

Once there, you can understand its location, as you can literally see for miles around.
View attachment 398490

Even walking up the gentle slope, it's a fair climb.
View attachment 398491

And looking over the sheer face of the south wall down to the river hundreds of feet below, its obvious no attack could come from that side.
View attachment 398492

Some of the walls are still in really good condition.
View attachment 398493


This is a view looking northwest.
View attachment 398494

It was originally built in 1277 but was damaged, firstly during Owain Glendower's rebellion and then later in 1461, during the War of the Roses.
View attachment 398495

But for almost 700 years old, its not looking too bad.
View attachment 398496

And the visitors these days are generally of a friendly persuasion.
View attachment 398497
I saw the thread title 'Castles' and was getting ready to post my Carreg Cennen photos...!
 
Having started this thread, I suppose I really should have kicked it off with my local castle, a short distance from where I live.

It had been in private hands from the 1960's and was rented out as holiday accommodation, sleeping ten in the main wing and six in the smaller one.

0302-01 Sign.JPG
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This is how it looked in 2003.

0302-01  Castle.JPG
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It dates from the 12th century and has obviously experienced all weathers, as seen here in 2004.

0402-05 Snow.JPG
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All those years were taking its toll on the fabric of the building and it was becoming damp and unkempt.
It was sold in 2008 with a local architect promising to save and restore it.
This was how it looked in 2009, just before renovation work began.

0903-04 Castle.JPG
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By the end of 2009, the castle disappeared from view for almost three years.

0912-01 Castle work.JPG
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Originally estimated to cost around two million pounds, costs soon rocketed, due to preservation orders on parts of the building and then realising that work carried out in the early 1900's to install steel frames and concrete floors had brought unseen problems. It transpired that in installing those, sand off the local beach had been used and obviously caused corrosion issues.
The renovation took twice as long as planned and the cost trebled to around six million pounds.
Here, it looks splendid on completion in the spring of 2012.

1203-28.jpg
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Living so close, ourselves and near neighbours experienced lots of noise and traffic disruption and were glad when all work was completed.
We were delighted that the owner then invited us for a viewing and explanation of the trials and tribulations of the renovation and his plans for the future of the castle.
Here's a sneak preview of a small part of the interior.

1203-20.jpg
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1203-15.jpg
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And a glimpse of the view looking out towards the sea.

1203-19.jpg
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Further views of the exterior of the south wing, which had caused some controversy over the choice of rendering to protect the delicate stonework.

1205-04.jpg
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1205-06.jpg
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Though It only took a few years for things to "mature" a bit.
This was 2017.

1701-TZ35.jpg
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The castle was then opened up as part of a hotel complex that the owner has, and its occupation was decreased, now having just six bedrooms.
Being a castle it occupies an elevated position and commands view both from and to it.

1904-133GX80.jpg
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All went well until Covid hit in 2020 and the lockdown within the UK.

2006-999-OM10-9F.jpg
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But this is more or less what it looks like now and it's business as usual.

2111-23 EM10:3-7.5.jpg
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Here's to another nine hundred years.
 

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