Castles in Suffolk
This page Bungay Castle - Orford Castle
A late 12th century castle erected by Hugh Bigod, the powerful Earl of Suffolk. Bigod was one of the strongest opponents of King Stephen, who tried to buy his loyalty by granting him the earldom. Henry II seized Hugh's lands, including Bungay, but later returned them. Around 1163 Bigod started building a strong keep at Bungay, standing over 33 metres high (100 feet) and surrounded by walls 5-7 metres thick.
Remains of a Norman fortress, situated within the beautiful countryside setting of the Clare Castle Country Park. A motte and bailey castle was built by Richard Fitzgilbert, cousin of William the Conqueror, shortly after the Norman conquest. The manor was later taken over by Gilbert de Clare. The de Clare family replaced that first wooden castle with a stone keep in the 13th century, and it is the remains of the 13th century fortress atop the Norman 70 foot mound we can see today. Within the inner bailey is a Victorian era railway station built by the Great Eastern Railway.
An 11th century motte and bailey castle with substantial 12th century curtain walls, Eye Castle was built by William Malet in 1186 atop an earlier Saxon mound that was probably the only high ground in north Suffolk. Eye Castle was attacked by Hugh Bigod, Earl of Suffolk, in 1173. The castle withstood Bigod's men, but was so badly damaged that it had to be rebuilt.
An idyllic 12th century castle on a rise overlooking a quiet lake. Framlingham Castle was built by the powerful Hugh Bigod, Earl of Norfolk. The castle is enclosed in a very well-preserved curtain wall with 13 towers. Framlingham's moment on the stage of English history came in 1547, when Mary Tudor waited at Framlingham for news of Henry VIII's death. The castle was later used as a poorhouse, a prison, and a school.
Orford Castle is a striking 12th century keep within a wide curtain wall. The castle was built in 1163 by Henry II for dual puroposes - to guard the Suffolk coastline and to exert royal control over an area known for its belligerent nobility. The curtain wall has all but disappeared, but the stone keep is in wonderful condition. You can climb to the top for superb views over Orford and out to sea.
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