A visit to Colchester Castle Museum takes one through 2000 years of some of the most important events in British history.
Once capital of Roman Britain, Colchester has experienced devestation by Boudica, invasion by the Normans and siege during the English Civil War.
I am certainly not attemping to go through that history here but offer some photos and snippets of information from our recent visit not having been there since we took our children when they were young even though it is only 45 minutes drive away
1066 was the defeat of the English by the invading army of Duke William of Normandy. After his victory at the Battle of Hastings, William strengthened his hold on the defeated English by ordering castles to be built throughout the country.
Colchester was chosen for its port and its important military position controlling the southern access to East Anglia. In 1070 work began on Colchester Castle, the first royal stone castle to be built by William in England.
The castle was built around the ruins of of the colossal Temple of Claudius using the Roman temple vaults as its base, parts of which can still be seen today.
Some clever and fun topiary in the garden outside
A 50 ft deep well
The Berryfield mosaic 150AD
Pots 1500 - 1000 BC
The first evidence of human beings in this country is dated to around 500,000 years ago
These were the commonest tools in use 500,000 - 40,000 years ago
On our way down to the original vaults of the Temple on which the present castle was built
Roman Temple foundations
A replica of the Roman Temple of Claudius AD54 and we are at this moment in the area shown in the 2 central 'domes' above
The Temple was above where we are now sitting
Original door frame
17 ft thick castle walls
Seen here a bone cemented into the wall, probably an animal bone
The prisoners were not all bad!
We will be going through this gate and up a stone spiral staircase into the roof
Roof was used as a chapel
Among what is left on top of the roof of one of the towers
A tree growing out of the roof
Well that's the tour for today - I will leave you with a few interesting snippets
Used as a prison for 800 years
We had no written language until the Romans arrived
Britain was full of tribal Kingdoms
There were only local warriors to fight the Roman soldiers, fishermen and potters etc.
Thomas A Becket, King John, and William. 1st and 2nd came here