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Farleigh Hungerford Castle

Visited September 2009

Location Farleigh Hungerford nr Bath
Entrance Fee Yes - check website
Railway Station    
Avoncliff- approx 2 miles
Parking Yes
Facilities Toilets, Shop
Map

 


Review

 

This castle is in the village of Farleigh Hungerford near the city of Bath. It is run by English Heritage, and in common with a lot of their sites it is mainly a ruin, but  with a couple of buildings restored. At this castle it is the priest’s house which is restored, and it houses a number of interesting exhibitions, several aimed at children. There is also a 'book box' containing loads of books on castles, some of them large & chunky for little fingers.

 

The chapel is also restored, it houses the crypt with a collection of coffins of the Hungerford family, who owned the castle for 300 years. It is a bit creepy in there, but in a few years time you can guarantee that those 'death masks' will be the main thing the children will remember about the castle visit.

 

The Hungerfords seemed quite a bloodthirsty lot- one of them had his wife imprisoned in the tower at the castle, hoping to starve her to death. But the local villagers took pity on her plight and smuggled in food every night. She lasted four years in that tower- until her husband was executed by Henry VIII. A different Hungerford wife used the castle ovens to get rid of her murdered husband's body. Nice family.

 

Despite all the gory history, this is a pleasant castle to take the children to. Not too big but enough space for it not to get crowded. There is quite a decent shop and good toilet facilities in the grounds. An audio tour is available, but we found the children kept playing with the buttons and not actually listening, so we preferred to wander around and read the information boards to get an idea of the history.

 

 


 

 


 

More info:  English Heritage

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