Abergavenny Castle

Abergavenny Castle

Abergavenny Castle is an enjoyable castle to visit as it is not only a castle, but also a museum with a lot focussing on world war 2.

The Motte was more than likely built by the Norman Lord Hamelin de Ballon in 1087. The tower built at the top of the motte would have once been made from wood. Beneath the motte was the bailey, a courtyard containing the outbuildings and stables surrounded by a wooden palisade. The castle was destroyed in 1233 by Richard Marshal, Earl of Pembroke, and the Welsh princes. The keep was later rebuilt in stone.

The first Great Hall in the castle was probably a timber building. Inside this Hall, on Christmas Day 1175, the Norman Lord of Abergavenny, William de Braose, murdered his  Welsh rival Seisyll ap Dyfnwal.

In 1182, the castle was attacked by relatives of the Seisyll ap Dyfnwal. Most of William de Braose’s men were captured. Most the the walls you see today are the remains of a stone Hall built between 1233 and 1295.

The Tower building consisted of two towers, one polygonal and the other circular. It has been suggested that these towers were built in 1295-1314 at the same time as the town walls, using tax which was collected by the local Lord at the time.

Features suggest that the Gatehouse was added early in the 15th Century. At this time the last Welsh War of Independence was being fought against Owain Glyn Dwr.

The castle was surrounded by a dry ditch rather than a moat.

The keep along with most of the other castle buildings, was destroyed in the Civil War, between 1645 – 1646. In 1818, the present building which is now the Museum was constructed on top of the motte as a hunting lodge for the Marquess of Abergavenny.

Abergavenny Castle is right in the town centre next to a public pay and display car park.