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Dr Mike J Smith
Kingston University

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Castle Rising Castle... and tearooms

Fri, 31 Aug 2007

Whilst on holiday in Norfolk over the summer we stopped at Castle Rising Castle. Whilst not belonging to English Heritage its preservation has been, at least partly, sponsored by them, so its on the "East of England" trail. And a mighty fine castle it is. According to EH:

"One of the largest, bestpreserved and most lavishly decorated keeps in England, surrounded by 20 acres of mighty earthworks. Begun in 1138 by William d’Albini for his new wife, the widow of Henry I, in the 14th century it became the luxurious exile-place of Queen Isabella, widow (and alleged murderess) of Edward II."

So there you have it. It's fun to look around, with corridors crudely hacked through the original 2m thick outer walls; done after the collapse of the main hall to allow access to rear upper rooms. The outer earth works provide good views and plenty of areas to wander around, including the original 13th century church which was probably torn down to make way for the castle.

Of course this is less important than the hugely impressive tea rooms in the village of Castle Rising. These are attached to the post office and are quaint and traditional. A definite stop for a freshly made cup of filter coffee or tea, along with a home made cake. Highly recommended!!

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