Main entrance to Lincoln Castle, England

Main entrance to Lincoln Castle, England

This evening, I am focusing on Lincoln Castle in England.

Lincoln Castle dates from the time of the Norman Conquest of England in 1066 but the actual site has a long history dating back to Roman times when it was occupied by a military fort. During the Saxon era the site was civilian and occupied by over 160 houses, with latter cleared to make way for the castle.

Lincoln Castle was a key link in the network of fortifications established by William the Conqueror to control his new kingdom. It has been used a court and prison for some 900 years. The court still functions today whilst the prison section closed in 1878 when a new prison was opened in Greetwell Road.

Inside the castle can be seen one of the four remaining original copies of the 1215 Magna Carta and one of only two surviving Charters of the Forest from 1217.

Key aspects of the castle are:

  • East Gate and main entrance.
  • Remains of Lincoln’s Eleanor Cross
  • Medieval Cobb Hall which is integrated in the castle wall and dates from the 13th century. This has had multi-purpose function: defence, imprisonment and public execution.
  • Wall walks. Access to the castle walls affords panoramic views over the local area.
  • Observatory Tower. Integrated within the defensive walls, to the left (facing) of the main entrance.
  • Lucy Tower: Situated on the original motte and formed the last bastion of defence.
  • West Gate: Opened on to open countryside.
  • Castle well, dating from medieval times.
  • Crown Court building which dates from 1826.
  • Georgian era prison building dating from 1787.
  • Victorian prison building dating from 1846.
  • Prison Chapel, the only remaining example of an original separate system chapel in the world.
  • Bust of King George III.
  • Bath House (former prison laundry).

View from Castle Walls with Lincoln Cathedral in background

View from Castle Walls with Lincoln Cathedral in background

View of Georgian prison building and early 19th C Court House

View of Georgian prison building and early 19th C Court House

Lincoln Castle is worthy of a visit. Nearby is the famous Cathedral. Here  is a blog record of a tour covering both sites.

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