Raglan Castle, Wales, 29th December 2014

January 4, 2015
Written by: Rob Slusar

I have not had chance since my honeymoon to get out and take many photographs, so when we made the decision to go to Wales for new year, it was the ideal chance to dust off the camera.

Over the Christmas period I made a big purchase, my first DSLR camera a Nikon D5200, I took advantage and took it to practice with. My wife also took my trusty Canon bridge so were got a variety of shots between us.

Our first stop was Raglan Castle in Monmouthshire.

The castle is one of the last medieval castles to have been built, and was built on land owned by the Bloet family, with the current stone structure being put together from the 15th century onwards by Sir William AP Thomas. It is believed that there was an earlier Norman built motte and bailey castle on the site, but this has not been confirmed.

The castle continued to have extensive improvements until the civil war when parliamentarians laid seige to the castle for a number of months. After surrender, the instruction was given to destroy the castle, but due to its strong construction, only some of the walls could be destroyed so the castle was left.

In the period following this, the castle was left to deteriorate, and it is suggested that the Somerset family, who at this time owned the castle, allowed their stewards to take stone and features from the castle. in 1756, Henry Somerset put a stop to this and began to restore the castle, which is currently a Grade 1 listed building.

This was the first time I used my SLR properly, so in was on auto.

Castle gatehouse at the main entrance through to stone courtyard.

Windows of the main hall from the stone courtyard. All the glass is gone, but the frames are still impressive.

Fireplace in the kitchen area. This is where to food would have been prepared with a double chimney stack above.

Looking toward the main hall, over the courtyard from what would have been the kitchen and office blocks.

Pantry and storage areas adjacent to the main hall. You can see where the floors were with the fire surrounds still in place hovering as a reminder of the rooms they once would have been in. This is a common sight around the castle.

The main hall, this is where feasts etc would have happened. In the 18th century when this castle was refurbished, this all was temporarily roofed in order to provide an entertainment space for tourists.

Demolished chapel behind the main hall.

The fountain stand in the Fountain Court looking towards the main staircase entrance to what would have been the apartment/living blocks.

The existing stairs have been replaced at some point, but here you can see the originals alongside the staircase which is currently there.

The floating fireplaces appear all over the castle, this one possibly showing one of the main state rooms due to it being much more detailed than the others.

Imagine looking out of this window in its better state. The view goes on for miles.

The castle was well built, and a lot of the stonework is still in really good condition.

Spiral staircases are another recurring theme of this castle.

The sun does shine in Wales.

A church in the mist.

The Great Tower was well fortified with a moat surrounding it, this whole structure could operate solely as a residence or defensive structure.

Only one access to and from the moat.

Remains of the stone floor in The Great Tower.

This stairway spiralled all the way up The Great Tower.

From the top of The Great Tower, this would have been a storey higher originally.

A flag in a frame.

Gatehouse and Great Tower.

Gatehouse and Closet Tower to the right

The moat around The Great Tower.

Thanks for looking.


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