Guildford Castle

Guildford Castle, Castle Street, GU1 3SX

Now offering killer views out across Guildford, the town's iconic ruined Medieval castle was originally built just after the invasion of England by William the Conqueror in 1066. It was used as a royal residence for several kings, including Henry III (whose renovations enabled him to refer to it as a palace, rather than castle) and Edward II. Later it offered its inhabitants much less salubrious accommodation when it was converted to a jail. Most of the structure was in ruins as long ago as 1379, with the exception of the king's great chamber. By 1630 the tower had its roof removed, and the structure was being used for cock fights. The castle was partially restored and the grounds opened to the public as a pleasure garden in 1888, and these days it coast nothing to stroll through the gorgeous gardens, which feature lawn bowls and giant chess boards. Entry to the tower itself costs a nominal amount - and although there isn't a huge amount to see inside, the vista is pretty cool. More details on the Castle can be found at the Guildford Museum

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