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 Castles of England - Eynsford Castle

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near Farningham, Kent, England

Eynsford Castle is a medieval castle overlooking the River Darent in Eynsford, Kent.

Eynsford Castle is a Norman enclosure castle now in ruins. The original castle consisted of a bailey protected by a stone curtain wall, with an outer bailey beyond the wall. There is little evidence left of the outer bailey. The inner bailey is now little more than an earth mound surrounded by a curtain wall and moat. The curtain wall was about 9 m tall and about 2 m wide and parts of it still stand to the full height. The inner bailey was reached by a bridge over the moat. the original bridge has long since disappeared, with the current wooden bridge built in the 1960s.

There is a small car park on the site. Parts of the site are wheelchair accessible, but some areas are accessed by steps.

Eynsford Castle was built by the Eynsford family in the 11th century. A new hall was built in the 12th century along with a new gatehouse. The wall was also heightened around this time. In the 14th century, a dispute over castle ownership resulted in the castle being vandalized and later left vacant. The castle went on to be used a hunting kennels and stables during the 18th century until the mid 19th century. The north side of the curtain wall round the bailey collapsed in the 19th century, and some of the terrace edge is now retained with a concrete wall. Ownership of the castle was transferred to the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings in 1937, and later guardianship was passed to the Ministry of Works in 1948. The castle is now owned by English Heritage.

In 2018, the tabloid press reported stories about a 'black monk' ghost at Eynsford Castle. A visitor had apparently taken photographs with a mysterious black cloaked figure in the background. Was it a ghost or was there perhaps a more down to earth explanation?

Other Castles in the Area
  Allington Castle, Kent
  Cooling Castle, Kent
  Hadleigh Castle, Essex
  Hever Castle, Kent
  Rochester Castle, Kent
  Tower of London, Greater London
  Upnor Castle, Kent

Upnor Castle
Eynsford Castle, Kent. Eynsford was one of the earliest castles to be given a stone wall. The first wall, 20 feet high, was put up in about 1088, and was later increased in height to 30 feet.

Photograph by Ron Strutt. Some rights reserved.  (view image details)

Upnor Castle
Eynsford Castle, Kent. Norman castle with curtain wall. The drawbridge was sited where the present footbridge is. The moat is now dry.

Photograph by Dr Neil Clifton. Some rights reserved.  (view image details)

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