Conwy Castle

Conwy Castle was begun in March 1283 as part of Edward’s Iron Ring of Castles and mostly completed by 1289 to the tune of 15,000 pounds (over ten million today).  The previous castle in the area was at Deganwy, which is visible from Conwy’s walls but was destroyed during the wars with King Henry and not rebuilt. Edward built the castle on the western side of the Conwy River as a foothold in the heart of Gwynedd in order to control an important river crossing. To build the castle and town Edward destroyed the monastery of Aberconwy, patronized by the Welsh princes. He also destroyed Llywelyn’s llys (palace). Like many castles of the iron ring, Conwy consisted of a castle and planted town of English settlers, all surrounded by massive stone walls with 8 great towers in a relatively compact Read more…

An Iron Ring of Castles

An Iron Ring of Castles is in many ways just like it sounds: a series of castles built around Wales to control the populace after the death of Llywelyn ap Gruffydd, the last Prince of Wales. In the 1270s and 1280s primarily, Edward I began the construction of this ring. The castles were focused in the north, in Gwynedd, since that region had always been a hotbed of Welsh resistance and resentment of English authority, and it was there that he built some of the most impressive monuments to his victory.  http://www.castlewales.com/edward1.html He began in the northeast with three castles: Hawarden, Flint, and Rhuddlan, all built before the 1282 war. Hawarden was the first castle attacked by Dafydd ap Gruffydd on Palm Sunday, 1282, when he started what became the final war with England.  Edward began Flint in 1277, bringing Read more…