The History of Caldicot Castle

LocationCaldicot, Monmouthshire, Wales (Google Maps)
Open for VisitorsYes
Owned byPrivate Owners
Rooms AvailableNo (Events can be organised in the Caldicot Castle Country Park)

Caldicot Castle sits on an ancient site surrounded by interesting history. It is located in the middle of the tranquil gardens and a wooded country park in Southern Wales. It was founded by Normans and developed by Royal as a Victorian family home. The Castle we see today was restored once and looks much similar to the original Castle. It welcomes visitors to explore the elements of this medieval fortress and enjoy Caldicot castle events organised there from time to time.

History

Caldicot has been mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086, not for its Castle but for the strong agricultural holding of Durand of Gloucester. The Caldicot castle was built in Caldicot probably at the beginning of the 12th century using timber and earth motte and bailey fortifications by Walter FitzRoger, Durand’s nephew. He inherited the lands and his father’s office as Constable of England and made them part of the land of the Castle. After his death, his son, Milo Fitz Walter, inherited the Castle. Milo had five sons, but they all lived a childless life. Therefore, the Castle was passed to his eldest daughter, Margaret. She married Humphery II de Bohun, the Earldom of Hereford and owner of the Constableship of England.

Humphery II made many changes to the Castle. However, the major renovation was done by his grandson, Henry. He founded a stone keep in the Caldicot castle before 1220. Humphrey De Bohun, the second Earl of Hereford, his son, formed the perimeter of stone defensive walls, i.e. curtain walls in the Castle after 1221 and before 1275. The Bohun family held the Caldicot castle for more than two centuries and over eight generations.

In 1373, Humphrey De Bohun, the 7th Earl of Hereford, died without any male heir. Because of this reason, his property was passed to his daughters, Eleanor and Mary. Thomas of Woodstock, the fifth son of King Edward III of England and the later duke of Gloucester, arranged the marriage of both sisters and looked after the Castle. He was the uncle of King Richard II and played an important role in royal courts.

In 1381, he extended the southern gate of the Castle. With time, the relationship between the king and his uncle became tense. In 1397, Thomas was murdered, and his property was taken away and passed to the Crown. In 1399, Henry Bolingbroke, son of Mary De Bohun, took over the throne of England. Henry Monmouth and Catherine Valois were the owners in the 15th century. Post that, the owners of the Castle changed several times. The fortress was damaged hugely because no renovation took place in the Castle.

In 1885, the Castle was finally sold to Joseph Richard Cobb. He transformed and renovated the Castle into a family home. It remained with the family till 1964, but later it was bought by Chepstow Rural District Council for 12,000 pounds. A year later, a small museum was added to the Caldicot castle, and it was made open to the public.

Architecture

Caldicot Castle
Caldicot Castle, by Nick, is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Caldicot Castle is an extensive stone medieval castle now used as a historic house museum and a tourist destination. The original shape of the Castle was similar to an oval of 100×66 metres. It included a defensive wall connected with a keep on the Northside, a horseshoe-shaped tower in the Southeast, and a cylindrical tower in the Southwest. The oldest stone element of the Castle was a cylindrical keep on the Northwest side. Today, the Castle has been reconstructed and has been given its original layout.

The Castle has the entire perimeter of the castle walls, three towers, a cylindrical keep, a west gate, and a south gate, which underwent reconstruction to overcome the ruins.

The Castle with a small museum is open for sightseeing. You can enjoy a regular program of medieval banquet evenings. Also, the outdoors is the favourite place for occasional events. You will generally notice Caldicot castle weddings, food festivals, and other events happening in the Caldicot castle and country park.

You can also check out Castle Inn Caldicot whenever visiting the location and have delicious food while enjoying the historic interiors.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is Caldicot Castle?

Caldicot Castle is a medieval building located in Caldicot in Southern Wales. Caldicot is a market town in Monmouthshire. You can find this castle on Google Maps and easily access it.  

Who lived in Caldicot Castle?

Caldicot Castle was owned by the Bohun family for over eight generations, and they transformed it from Motte and Bailey structure to a stone castle. Today, you can find the ruins and renovated parts of the first stone structure of the castle.

Have you visited this castle before? If yes, why not share some beautiful pictures with us!
You can email us your pictures of the castle at castrumtocastle@gmail.com. Please use the name of the castle in the subject line.
Also, don’t forget to mention your name and social media profile link if you want the credits!

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