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 Castles of England - Arundel Castle

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Arundel, West Sussex, England

Arundel Castle is located four miles north of Littlehampton in West Sussex, England. The castle is now the home of the Duke of Norfolk and his family. It is a Grade I listed building. Most of the castle and 40 acres of grounds and gardens are open to the general public, except for the private apartments within the quadrangle. The castle interior features paintings, period furniture, tapestries and stained glass, sculpture and carving, heraldry and armour. The castle has a shop and restaurant. Arundel Castle is built on a hill and there are some steep stairs and narrow passages. About two thirds of the Castle interior is accessible to wheelchairs, subject to some width limits

Arundel Castle was built in 1068 during the reign of William the Conqueror as a fortification for the River Arun. The castle was built by Roger de Montgomery, the first earl of Arundel, as a motte and bailey castle.

After the death of Roger de Montgomery, the castle reverted to the crown under Henry I. The King left Arundel Castle to his second wife Adeliza of Louvain. In 1138 she married William d'Aubigny. In 1176, William d'Aubigny died and Arundel Castle then reverted to the crown, under Henry II. When Henry died, the castle remained in the possession of Richard I ("the Lionheart"), who returned it to the Aubigny family under William III comte de Sussex. The castle passed to the FitzAlan of Clun family through marriage, and remained with the FitzAlan family until 1555. The FitzAlan line ceased when Mary FitzAlan, daughter of the nineteenth earl, married Thomas Howard, 4th Duke of Norfolk.

During the Civil War (1642-45), the Castle was badly damaged when it was attacked twice - firstly by Royalists who took control, and then by Cromwell's Parliamentarian forces who destroyed its fortifications.

Charles Howard, 11th Duke of Norfolk carried out considerable restoration work and improvements in the late 18th century. Henry Charles Howard, 13th Duke of Norfolk refurbished the castle prior to the visit by Queen Victoria in 1846. The suite of rooms in which Victoria stayed as they were and are now called the "Victoria Rooms". The castle is still owned by the Howard family.

The Arts
Arundel Castle was used in a number of movies and TV shows: the Doctor Who episode Silver Nemesis (1988); The Madness of King George (1994); Victoria & Albert (2001 TV serial); The Young Victoria (2008); MacGyver TV movie Trails to Doomsday.

Other Castles in the Area
  Amberley Castle, West Sussex
  Bramber Castle, West Sussex

Bramber Castle
Arundel: the castle from the southeast. This is the view from the Burpham road, south of the railway line.

Photograph by Chris Downer. Some rights reserved.  (view image details)

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