Castles Abbeys

Medieval Buildings

Various Pictures One

This Month I shall feature some pictures of buildings I have taken photographs of over the last year, mainly in Sussex as I spent a lot of time in the county during the summer, all will be new.

If you require any further information on any of these sites, mail me and ask, I shall answer all I can.



Herstmonceux Castle, East Sussex. Built in 1440 by Roger de Fiennes, unusually in brick, at a time when castles were already out of date. Fiennes played a prominant role in the Hundred Years War, and fought at the Battle of Agincourt with King Henry V. The impressive gatehouse, with a drawbridge, double parapet and continous row of machicolations were built not only as a decorative architecural feature,but were also equiped with gun and arrow loops. Some critics have described Herstmonceux as a folly and not designed for real defence, but with its 4 ft thick walls it could have mounted resistance but would never have survived a prolonged seige. It would probably be better to call it a fortified manor than a castle.


The Manor of Herstmonceux dates back to Edward the Confessor, when it was owned by Edmer, a priest. By Domesday it was part of the Rape of Hastings and held by the Count of Eu. The present castle had a active life of only 300 years and by 1777 it was being dismantled. It is now owned by Queeen's University, Ontario, Canada who have restored it beautifully and is used as a study centre. The grounds are open throughout the year to visitors and a splendid medieval weekend is held here over August Bank Holiday as well as many other fine events throughout the summer.


The Church Porch and Lytchgate of St Andrew & St Mary in Fletching, East Sussex. This beautiful Church contains the excellent Brass of Sir Walter and Lady Dalyngrigge dating from 1380, Sir Walter was a relative of Sir Edward Dalyngrigge who was the builder of Bodiam Castle, seen as a featured site on these web pages. Also to been seen at Fletching is a small unusual brass of two gloves which are mounted upon a stone slab. The Brass is quite unique and belongs to Peter Denot. He took part in Jack Cades rebellion and was subsequently pardoned, dates from 1450. This is also the church that Simon de Montfort spent the night in prayer at before the Battle of Lewes. Many other fine monuments may be seen in this fine Saxon & early Norman church.


The lovely remains of the Castle at Crowhurst, near Battle in East Sussex. A manor house first appeared here in 772 when King Offa gave eight Hides of land here to Oswald, Bishop of Selsea. It later came into the possession of Earl Harold, soon to become King Harold, but following the defeat at Hastings it was granted to the Count of Eu as part of the Rape of Hastings. It later came under the ownership of several great and notable families from the Scotney family and after, passed to the son of Henry III, Prince Edward, later to be known as 'Longshanks' King Edward I.


Crowhurst was later left to the elements for about a hundred years until it was repaired by John, earl of Richmond between 1358-60. It was at this time it received its fortifications, but these could never have been substantial as there is no trace left of them today. Later owners included Sir Edward Dalyngrigge, owner and builder of Bodiam Castle, some 15 miles to the North and also featured on this site. In 1412, King Henry IV granted it to Sir John Pelham, and it remained in the family's estate until the early 17th Century when they moved and was left to ruin. The second picture on the right shows the Pelham Buckle Arms. This is said to have been given to a Pelham after the Battle of Poitiers by the Black Prince for his part in the capture of the French King.

Crowhurst was never really a Castle in the true sense but more a small, fortified manor. It is now lovingly kept in the garden of a Victorian house whose elderly owners will gladly let visitors view it and pass on some of their own interesting bits of it's history.

The Medieval Bridge at Stopham, West Sussex.

The River Arun flows under Stopham Bridge about a mile from Pulborough. The Bridge is 14th century and has six small arches and a high one in the middle. It stands 190ft long with 17 little recesses for walkers, with the lovely trees overhanging the river it makes a beautiful scene.


Lady Margret de Camoys and Lord & Lady de Camoys

The wonderful Parish church of St George at Trotton, West Sussex contains two of the finest brasses to be found in Southern England, Lady Margret de Camoy and Lord and Lady de Camoys. He commanded the right of the English Army at Agincourt and had a distinguished career as a soldier and diplomat.

The Brass of Lady Margret is thought to be the oldest full length brass of a woman in England and dates to 1310. Her husband was captured at the Battle of Bannockburn 1315.

The church also contains some superb medieval wall paintings which depict in the centre, the last Judgment and on either side the seven Acts of Mercy and the seven Vices. It is a small church but it contains a wealth of other medieval treasures. *Recommended*

The Cloister at Norwich Cathedral, Norfolk.

Batemans, Burwash, East Sussex.

Last but not least I show you a window from Batemans in East Sussex. This is not a medieval building, but a fine Jacobean house that was the home of Rudyard Kipling between 1902-1936. It has been left as it was when he died, a wonderful house and beautiful gardens, I make no apology for including this picture on these pages.



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