Bodiam Castle was built between 1385 and 1388 century by Sir Edward Dalyngrygge who was given a licence by Richard II crenellate his mansion.
However, he chose a new site further up hill and thus Bodiam became one of the few examples of a castle built for a private citizen.
The castle is rectangular in design and reflects the style of earlier buildings with its symmetry of walls and towers. It is set in an extensive artificial lake. The original entrance was across a wooden bridge set at right angles to the castle to a fortified octagonal island. From here there was a further system of bridges involving three portcullises, three drawbridges, two fortified bastions and three doors.
However, despite these fortifications the castle was incapable of being defended against heavy cannonfire since its walls were thin and tall, unlike of later forts built with walls of immense thickness. It was attacked in 1484 and 1643 and surrendered quickly on both occasions.
In 1643 the Parliamentarians were ordered to dismantle the castle.
The castle remained in a ruinous state until it was partially restored by Cubitt in the late 19th century.
In 1917 Lord Curzon purchased the castle and undertook its final restoration.
The castle is now reached by a modern causeway and is owned by the National Trust.
Days and times vary, please see the website.
Tel: 01580 830196 Bodiam Castle Website