Lympne Castle, Kent
The history of Lympne Castle is a very peaceful one. Its walls have never been tested to attack.
This fabulous little castle is perched upon what was once high ground overlooking an ancient Roman Fort and important sea port.
The views are simply stunning, looking out to the English Channel and surrounding Romney Marshes. You can see just how far the sea has receded over the centuries.
The castle itself has some beautiful features and one can see why today it is a favourite venue for weddings, including that of our own nephew.
Access to the castle is by appointment as it is a working castle. You can see the castle from the Roman fort lower down on the slopes by way of a lovely walk along the Military Canal, built to defend the Realm against Napoleon.
~ History ~
280s ~ The Romans build themselves a stone fort of Lemanis, as part of their coastal defences against the raiding Saxons, protecting a valuable port. Its walls 12-14 feet thick give its name Stout Wall fort, later Stutfall Castle.
370 ~ Stuttfall is abandoned due to the retreating sea and also the clay ground that the heavy walls have been built upon continues to see sections of the wall slide down the hill towards the retreating sea.
1085 ~ Monks who inhabit the top of the ridge above the ruined and abandoned Roman fort are dispelled from their church by Norman knights. The church and manor of Lympne however remain in the possession of the Archbishop of Canterbury until Archbishop Lanfranc grants it to the archdeacons. Whilst the Archbishops build themselves a castle at nearby Saltwood, the archdeacons build themselves a smaller castle next to their church.
1360 ~ During a lull in the Hundred Years War with France, the archdeacon's Lympne Castle is greatly expanded and rebuilt.