Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Carlisle Castle

Carlisle Castle was first built during the reign of William II of England, the son of William the Conqueror who invaded England in 1066. 

At that time, Cumberland (the original name for north and west Cumbria) was still considered a part of Scotland. William II arrived and drove the Scots out of Cumberland to claim the area for England. He ordered the construction of a Norman style mote and bailey castle in Carlisle on the site of an old Roman fort, with construction beginning in 1093. 

The need for a castle in Carlisle was to keep the northern border of England secured against the threat of invasion from Scotland. In 1122, Henry I of England ordered a stone castle to be constructed on the site. Thus a keep and city walls were constructed.
(Information sourced from Wikipedia)

This was my first ever trip up to Carlisle Castle, and after looking it up on the Internet first I was really interested in going along and having a good look around.

On the way up to the castle I saw a crest which was one the side of the museum which is right across the road from the castle.

Walking across the grass I took a picture of the main tower inside the castle.

Then it was up to the main entrance of the castle, Once inside you finally get the scale of the whole place.
Here is a picture taken of just a small area of the castle grounds from on top of the castle walls.

As I walked around the grounds I came across a hole in the ground with old stone steps leading down into the darkness.

So obviously I had to go down and have a look.


Their was very little information about this area apart from it was a gun emplacement. I'm guessing this was built later when the castle was used by the Border Regiment of the Army until 1959. 
(A little more about that later)

From their I took a walk up and along the castle walls.
Walking up one of the staircases their was an winch built into the wall.

I reached the top of the stairs and had a walk along the walls.

And further along I walked.

From here I took an image of the castles tower.

Further along the wall I noticed the replica cannons pointing out over Carlisle.

From here I spotted some thing else left from the Army's time at the castle.
Tucked away in one of the corners of the castle in an alcove was.

I really wasn't expecting to find this in the middle of a castle.

I'm guessing, and could probably wrong but this is an APC and a Cannon.

And a close up on the APCs View port and number.

From here I went over and had a look inside the main tower.
Here is it's entrance and the bridge over a interesting looking mini-moat.

Inside the tower their was lots of small corridors leading off into small empty rooms.

In one of the rooms I noticed things that had been scratched into the stone. Later I found out their are whole rooms covered in writing and other figures but unfortunately for me, it was closed when I was their.

Unfortunately after all that walking around I had to go home. Their was a massive amount more you could do and see at the castle, The learning centre and also the military museum which were also in the grounds of the castle, along with lots of other buildings. But we will save them for another time.

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