"Southampton Castle" Top 5 Page for this destination Southampton Favorite Tip by johngayton

Southampton General: 7 reviews and 14 photos

  The present-day "Castle House"
by johngayton
  • The present-day "Castle House" - Southampton
      The present-day "Castle House"
    by johngayton
  • The original castle gate - Southampton
      The original castle gate
    by johngayton
  • The water gate and castle walls - Southampton
      The water gate and castle walls
    by johngayton

Favorite thing: In its early days as a port Southampton would have been at least semi-fortified, especially as its main import was wine from the continent. It's first recorded castle was that built by the Normans, around 1150. This was originally a simple motte and bailey affair - a sronghold built on top of a raised mound - which became a major stone-built fortress as part of the city walls complex following the French looting of the town (during which they made off with the contents of the King's wine vaults) in the early part of the 100 Years War.

By 1600 AD the town's importance as a port had waned, the castle became unused and fell into disrepair and was eventually sold off by James 1st in 1613. It was never used again as a castle and in the 1960's became the site for the City Council's "Castle House" apartment block.

Some of the castle's walls and towers are still standing, in various states of repair, as are the main castle gate and it's water gate. These make for an interesting part of the city walls tour.

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Jun 25, 2010
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