Bodiam Castle stands near the river Rother, between Kent and
Sussex. It was built by Sir Eddward Dalyngrygge who was granted permission to
fortify his house against a possible invasion from France. As soon as it as
finished the English regained control of the Channel and Bodiam became
redundant. Dalyngrygge built a symmetrical quadrangular stone castle surrounded
by an artificial lake. Bodiam fell into ruins but the outer walls were restored
by Lord Curzon early in this century.
|Gordon Herndon, 74, from
|I lived in England several
years and visited Bodiam Castle over 150 times. I was awed in the
hypnotic beauty and symmetry of the castle walls and moat. My wife
and I plan to visit England in the next few months and this beautiful
place will be on our agenda not only o see it but to view it as one of
he most outstanding placed I frequently visited and have wanted to
share. I'd like to see the apartments rebuilt in the center to resurrect
it in its complete beauty. I've photographed it thousands of times in
color and black and white but have given all of my photos away.
|Melissa Fisher, 15, from
|The Bodiam Castle, located
in East Sussex, England along the border with Kent, is a site that
is breathtaking. Made of a sandy, brown stone, the castle seems to float
majestically in a water-filled moat. Surrounding the moat is a broad
expanse of greenery, making the perfect setting for this fairytale
castle. Not always has the Bodiam Castle been so magnificent, though.
The Bodiam Castle began simply as a Saxon hall in as early at A.D. 1066,
as recorded in the Doomsday Book. After a Norman Conquest, the hall was
taken over by a Norman family, the Bodehams, who controlled the entire
area. The hall, or more formally known as the Manor of Bodiam, was
changed into the manor house for the Bodehams and become the foundation
for the construction of the present-day Bodiam Castle. For three
centuries the hall was a place of construction and renovation. Threats
in A.D. 1385f from French forces allowed King Edward the Third to grant
Sir Edward Dalyngrigge a license to strengthen and construct the hall
into a castle. Edward Dalyngrigge had came into control of the Manor of
Bodiam in 1378 when he married Elizabeth Warddeux, who's family had also
married into possession of the Manor of Bodiam. Though, the actual
Bodiam Castle is not the site of where the manor house was, it is
clearly linked. Edward, not wanting the manor house changed, decided to
build a whole new castle nearer to the river, Rother. The castle served
as a military stronghold and a place of residence for the lord and his
family. The castle was never actually attacked by the forecasted
invasion of the French. For many years the castle was in peace.
In the A.D. 1480's, the castle was surrendered to the Crown after being
besieged. After being regained by the Lewknor family in the A.D. 1500's,
it belonged to John Tufton, the second Earl of Thanet from A.D. 1639 to
A.D. 1645. During the English Civil War and after the Bodiam Castle had
been victimized by the Parliamentary forces, Cromwell ordered the castle
to be torn apart. The inside of the Bodiam Castle was completely
destroyed, but the outside was left very much intact. Ownership of
the Bodiam Castle has been passed though many hands during the last 270
years. During that time the castle has received very little attention
and repairs have been neglected. In 1917, though, Narquess Curzon came
into ownership and things began to change. He began restoration
and continued in its repairs up until his death in 1925. The Bodiam
Castle, now, rightfully belongs to the National Trust, which keeps the
site of the castle and the castle in excellent shape. During the
time when the Bodiam Castle was built, castles were built to last and
were to be comfortable and secure for the lords or nobles that resided
in them. The outward appearance of the castles helped in showing the
lords of nobles wealth and rank. Sir Edward Dalyngrigge, who began the
building of the Bodiam Castle mixed what he saw in France and what was
popular in England. He borrowed the comfort and luxuries from the French
and the strength and stability from the English fortresses. The style in
which Dalyngrigge built and furnished the Bodiam Castle made it one of
the most modern during its time.
The Bodiam Castle is build with symmetrical towers and a
broad open court. The living quarters or apartments are spread
throughout the quadrangle sides facing to the interior of the castle and
the court. Though the castle is sealed off from the outside world,
inside it is open and airy. The way that it was built showed the end of
the Middle Ages. The lord's quarters were well connected with an
escape route that would lead to at least one of the three different draw
bridges. Spiral staircases led up through the towers and other
stairways wound their way through the halls and corridors. Though,
believed to be strong at the time and a fortress against the enemies the
castle was not built well enough to withstand a large-scale attack.
Luckily that has never been put to the test and never likely will.
|Nick, 13, from Missouri,
|I am currently doing a
report on the Bodiam castle in my computers class. There is little
info about this castle on the web... and the same info is usually stated
again. But this castle is Wonderful looking!! I have never visited
this castle but I want to. Its an awesome castle!!
|Nick, 13, from USA, wrote:
|The Bodiam castle is a nice
one. It is wonderful for taking pictures. If you are ever in Sussex go
and see it. There is not any good info any where on the web. its driven
|Scarlett, 13, from
|I think this castle is a
beautiful piece of work it is perfect for kids to do a project or
anything else well that is all I think of it.
|Cristal. 16, from Texas,
|This castle is very
beautiful. I have been to every castle in England, except for two
of them. I have also stayed in 2 of them. My family, the
Pennington's, had their own castle, which I have visited the most.
But no castle I have ever been to has even come close to the Bodiam
castle. I love the structure of it. I just wish there was
more information on it on the net. I am doing a report over Bodiam
Castle, but there's hardly any info on it anywhere! We have to
write a 4 page report over it-and I think there should be more info on
it. Your site doesn't have that much info, but I love the picture.
|Lauren 14, from USA, wrote:
| I am currently doing
a school project on Bodiam castle. I found that it has a lot of history,
and not only has beauty but defenses. The castle is wonderful- but I do recommend
bringing a raincoat !!Also watch out for the sheep poo!! ok- I'm sure I've
given you some teenage insight :) Bodiam is definitely worth
|Jenny Lopez, 19, from
|I visited Sussex in
England in June and I visited this magnifique castle as part of a tour!
I think it's an amazing piece of history and it is a wonderful place to
visit! If you are ever in Sussex I encourage that you see the Bodiam
|Jim Parker, 26, from USA, wrote:
|This Castle is quite breathtaking
indeed! Recommended for any age, though you will get quite tired. It is
very enjoyable and will please many castle-loving people. Hint: Take a
camera with PLENTY of film. You will treasure these forever.
|Edgar Locke, 47, from UK wrote:
|I visited Bodiam Castle recently. If
you have an idea in your mind of what a typical castle looks like, this
is it. Another castle I love, indeed I grew up near it, is Amberley
Castle in West Sussex, built at the same time as Bodiam. You get a great
view of the castle from the train as it slows down to call at Amberley
Station. The first mansion on the site was the home of St Richard,
Bishop of Chichester. St Richard's famous prayer is displayed on a
plaque on the wall separating the castle from the church. It's a castle
I strongly recommend you describe on this site
|Neill Cooper. 40+, from UK wrote:
|The best Castle in the world!
Greatly enjoyed by our (and other) young children. The perfect exterior is just what one hopes of a castle, but rarely
sees. The inside is well worth exploring. Lots of special activity days,
such a Robin Hood visit (yes, it is not really RH country), jousting,
Easter egg hunts (!?). Also a large park, sheep, a river, a local steam
railway. Not to be missed. Free to National Trust members.
|Mike Stempo, 44, from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA,
| For many people, Bodiam Castle is a mind's eye view
of what a castle would look like (unless of course you're into
Disneyesque translations). My children stood in awe the first time
they set eyes on Bodiam Castle. They explored and imagined
themselves the original occupants for hours. It is well worth the
trip and can be included in a tour of Leeds and Hever Castles without
too much trouble.
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