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White Castle

Visited  March 2012

Location Nr. Llantilio Crosseney, Monmouthshire
Entrance Fee Yes
Railway Station Nearby No
Parking Yes
Facilities None


White Castle was originally known as Llantilio Castle, but became known as White due to the white render on the walls of the castle, fragments of which can still be seen today. White Castle is very close to  Skenfrith Castle and Grosmont Castle,  and they were  known collectively as 'The Three Castles' as they formed a defensive ring along the strategic area in the borderland between England & Wales.







The Three Castles were united into one Lordship in the reign of King Stephen in approx. 1138. By the end of the 12th century White Castle was rebuilt in stone, something which the other two castles had to wait a few more decades for. Under the Lordship of Hubert de Burg, all three castles were remodelled. Skenfrith & Grosmont were given all the mod cons of a comfortable residence, but White Castle was extended to improve its defensive role.  The striking twin towered gatehouse was added by Edward Crouchback, son of Henry III. It had a large moat, and a drawbridge which spanned only half of the moat, the other half was made up of a drawbridge pit with a liftable bridge on the top. This could be drawn up during an attack on the castle, blocking the way to the gatehouse. The drawbridge is today long gone, but the modern bridge taking the visitor into the inner ward of the castle is built roughly in the same position, and it is noticeably long.





The castle site is large, and consists of an outer & inner ward, both with gatehouses, and several impressive towers. The tower of the inner gatehouse can be climbed and has a good view of both of the grassy wards. The inner ward has the remains of several domestic buildings and a small chapel. This is also the site of a Norman tower, long since demolished. The curtain wall surrounding both the inner and outer wards are impressive and mainly intact. There is a lot to be seen at White Castle and if the weather is good the visit can be extended with a picnic- tables are provided. There is a flat, grassy area in the outer ward which is good for running around on, just in case there is any excess energy to be burned off! There were no facilities when we visited, but it was still in the winter opening times- I think there might be at least some portaloos available during the summer season, but check before you visit.







More info: CADW White Castle

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