Leeds Castle

Uncategorised Posted by gaytravel on  Mon, Feb 29th, 2016 @ 8:57:57 AM  8  0    

Leeds Castle

Leeds Castle rises serenely from the waters of its surrounding lake. The lake is an artificial one created by damming the River Len. The castle existed in 1139 because, in that year, King Stephen wrested it from Matilda’s supporters.
Image © donsimon / 123RF Stockfoto

The two islands on which suggest a motte and bailey origin, and the lake itself existed by 1272. In terms of masonry, however, the castle is essentially the work of Edward I, with additions by Henry VIII and much nineteenth-century beautification. Around the entrance, the lake decreases to a narrow moat.

On the near side of the moat are the ruins of a peculiar barbican, which had three gateways because three roads converged here. The gatehouse is a squat tower, Edwardian in date but not at all in spirit. It has a recess for the drawbridge and a later row of machicolations above the entrance.

Except for one of the four D-shaped flanking bastions, the curtain was reduced to a low retaining wall in the nineteenth century, to allow an unimpeded view across the lake. Foundations of an earlier curtain enclosing a slightly narrower area have come to light, so Leeds may have been a concentric castle, though there is no proof that the two walls stood simultaneously. There are two separate residential blocks within the bailey: Maiden’s Tower, one of Henry VIII’s additions, and the neo-Gothic mansion built by Fiennes Wykeham-Martin in the 1820s. It occupies the site of lavish medieval apartments.

From the back of the mansion, a stone corridor, replacing a wooden causeway and drawbridge, leads to the keep on the smaller island. It is known as the Gloriette. This peculiar, D-shaped structure is built around a tiny courtyard in shell keep manner. Its lower part, including the tall plinth, which rises straight out of the water, is Edward I’s work.

Address: Maidstone, Kent ME17 1PL, United Kingdom
Phone: +44 1622 765400

Getting there

Non-UK residents will have to take the plane or boat. Once you’re on the biggest British Isle you can book the rest of the trip by train.

Castle events

The Leeds castle is much more than just a touristic hangout. You can take part in many courses or experiences as the Falconry and the Wildlife Experience or the Golf Course. You can enjoy concerts, afternoon tea or diners. Also, you can organize style full wedding or meetings in the castle. And there is family accommodation in a camping on location! For the complete program of the season go to their website on leeds-castle.com.

Combined organised visits

Private Visit of Leeds Castle, Canterbury, White Cliffs of Dover, Greenwich and River Cruise

Apr–Sep: Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat, Sun
Oct–Mar: Wed, Fri, Sat, Sun 8.45 AM



Book in advance

full day tour in and outside of London.
With a professional tour guide you will experience a private visit to Leeds Castle, see Canterbury Cathedral, the White Cliffs of Dover & Greenwich ending the day with a Thames cruise


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