Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Medieval Castle

Since our history topic is the Middle Ages a castle  visit was in order.  Bodiam,  a beautiful  14th century fortress was our choice.

Bodiam is a moated rectangular castle in the Sussex countryside.

 In its long history  it has been a fortress, family home  and ruin.  Apparently, it has been valued as a ruin 
since at least Victorian times.  More recently,  in the  Second World War,  a pillbox was built for air raid defence. 

There is some debate about whether its primary purpose in the fourteenth century was defence against the French and the peasants in revolt or whether it was just a status symbol. It had fish ponds, a wharf and mill ponds. Probably, we will never know but certainly the moat is full of fish now. Enough to keep an invading army fed for a day or two!

The heavily defended entrance is approached over a long bridge
and has an impressive unicorn on the wall.

Once inside the tower, we could climb turrets
and found arrow slits.

We watched the introductory video after we had climbed the tower. Not quite right but then climbing the towers was important.

An archer
told us about the King Arthur stories and how they were used by Medieval monarchs to encourage loyalty from the knights and how the Order of the Garter was formed.

Probably the best part for the children was the archery including trying to hit a plastic deer and a plastic boar. One child is very keen to have another go! I'm hoping to avoid target practice in the garden.

A highly recommended day for some hands on learning and fun.

Disclaimer: Some of these photographs were taken by Younger Daughter.

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1 comment:

  1. That looks like it was a very neat and interesting place to visit. I would love to see medieval castles like this sometime. I love the history behind them.