Built on cliffs overlooking the River Teme, Ludlow Castle grew from modest beginnings into the most strategic fortification on the Welsh borders.
Work began in around 1085 by Roger de Lacy.
In the 1130's a rival claimant, Sir Joyce de Dinan, made improvements to the castle and added the round chapel in the middle ward. After 20 years the Lacys recovered their property but the Lacy line ended in 1240. 70 years later Roger Mortimer (responsible for the murder of Edward II) realised the potential of the castle.
The Mortimers built the impressive buildings of the north front in the 14th century. When a member of the Mortimer family was crowned Edward IV the castle became a royal property. The north-east tower is named after the King's two sons who were murdered at the Tower of London.
The north-west tower commemorates Prince Arthur, older brother of Henry VIII, who died at the castle.
From that period on the castle was occupied by the Lord President of the Council of Wales.
The most famous holder of that title was Sir Henry Sidney, favourite of Queen Elizabeth I, who built the gatehouse to north in 1581, part of his extensive improvements to the castle.
The castle was relatively undamaged during the Civil War but in 1651 the defences were deliberately demolished.
Closes for functions - please check website. 2008: Dec & Jan: 10:00-16:00 Sat-Sun; Feb-Mar & Oct-Nov: 10:00-16:00 daily; Apr-Jul & Sept: 10:00-17:00 daily. Aug: 10:00-19:00 daily. 26 Dec-1 Jan: open 10:00-16:00 except Christmas Day.
Tel: 01584 873355 Ludlow Castle Website