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Harlech Castle, Wales

Harlech Castle is one of the great castles Edward I built to enforce his rule over the Welsh. Situated high upon a rocky outcrop, its seaward side was defended by sheer cliffs, while a deep moat protected the other sides. It was designed by Master James of St George, who personally supervised its construction, ensuring that the vast fortress was completed in just seven years (1283-1290). The castle is built to a concentric design with an impressive inner curtain wall with huge round towers on the corners, surrounded by an outer perimeter of much lower walls. The inner walls contained domestic buildings, including a great hall, and the more vulnerable east side of the castle was strengthened by a massive gatehouse that contained comfortable residential quarters.

Harlech Castle played a key role in the last great Welsh uprising, led by Owain Glyn Dwr. In 1404, after a long siege, the castle fell to Glyn Dwr, and became his home and headquarters for the next four years. Harlech was finally retaken by the English in 1409, under the command of Harry of Monmouth, prince of Wales – the future King Henry V. Although Glyn Dwr escaped, his family were captured, and the fall of Harlech marked the beginning of the end of the great uprising.

Official Website : www.harlech.com

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Castles

Castles were first built in England during the Norman Conquest in the 11th century as fortifications. There are many hundreds of castles throughout England some in good repair whilst others have all but completely disappeared other than a few stones to mark the spot.

Castles

Lakes

England has many lakes spread out over the whole of the country but the most famous must be the Lake District which draws around 16 million visitors each year to admire the beauty of the countryside around the lakesides. Lake Windermere is England’s largest lake.

Lakes

National Parks

The National Parks of England are quite diverse but all have in common one thing and that is their beauty. From the windswept reaches of Dartmoor and Exmoor to the mountains and lakes of the Lake District or the ancient, peaceful tranquility of the New Forest all are worthy of a visit.

National Parks

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