|Colchester Castle Key Facts|
|County||Essex (7 castles)|
|Categories||Pre Medieval / Norman Square Keep|
|Remains||Small amount survives|
|Access to site||Only open at certain times|
|1080||Colchester castle begun|
|To defend the estuaries of Essex against attacks from the Danes William the Conqueror ordered the construction of a new castle at Colchester.|
Episode: Norman Conquest
|1091||Colchester Castle passes to Eudo|
|Once the threat from invasion had reduced, the castle was passed into the control of Eudo de Rie, who held the position of high steward.|
|1215||Colchester Castle occupied by the French|
|An invasion force from France under direction of Philippe II, the king of France captured Colchester Castle. Their objective was to help the cause of the Baron's against king John.|
White Tower, London
One of the most important types of building in the time of William the Conqueror and William Rufus were the Norman keeps. Although many were rebuilt in the following century there are many good examples still remaining. The White Tower in London (pictured left), Dover and Rochester in the south east, Newcastle, Appleby, Carlisle, Brough, Richmond in the north are all examples of this type of castle. Other examples include Portchester, Guilford, Goodrich, Norwich, Castle Rising, Hedingham and Colchester. The castles are all built from a roughly uniform plan. A massive square tower with a square turret at each of the corners that project slightly. Each of the main faces of the castle has a flat buttress running up the centre of the wall for extra strength. The only parts that have decoration are usually the main doorway at the entrance and the chapel. At the centre of the keep are large halls. Some keeps have a dividing wall down the middle. Access to different levels and sections of the castle are by passages and spiral staircases built into the thick walls.
Take control of a medieval trebuchet to destroy the enemy castle and capture their flag.
Transport yourself back up to a thousand years and explore historical buildings as they may have appeared in the past.