Kidwelly Castle (Wales)

Carmarthenshire     See list of castles in Galles

Kidwelly is a powerful and imposing monument of Norman power. It 'also a beautiful example of development, such as the castle was dramatically altered by a number of occasions to comply with the latest thinking in the field of military science. Roger, bishop of Salisbury, the executioner of England, established Norman power in the area and the castle ringwork (see below) who built here was one of a series of forts designed by the Normans to secure the new conquests of south Wales ordering the river passes here and in Laugharne, Llansteffan and Loughor.

Ringworm in Kidwelly was built on a steep ridge overlooking the river Gwendraeth to its higher tide limit. No further reinforcement was needed on the river bank, and the current semi-circular bank and ditch formed the 12th century defenses that would be complemented by a wooden fence on the shore, probably further strengthened by towers and certainly by a gate. Inside it would be the domestic buildings of the gentleman timber. This castle fell to the Welsh several times in the late 12th century and early 13th, including once in 1159, when the Lord Rhys took it and burned. He is then credited with the reconstruction of the castle in 1190. In 1201, however, he was back in Norman hands and remained English from then on, despite periodic attacks.

Images of the castle

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Useful infos

Latitude: 51.7394985
Longitude: -4.3057125
See the map
See the images

Map of Kidwelly Castle