William I introduced motte and bailey fortifications to England, after his conquest of England in 1066. The motte was a raised fortification, built on an artificial hill. The bailey comprised of the living and service areas adjacent to the motte.
As time went on, both motte and bailey fortifications gave way to stone structures. The motte became the castle keep, and the bailey often sported a curtain wall.
There are many fine castles throughout England. Ironically, some of the finest examples of English – or, rather, Anglo-Norman castle building happened not in England but in Wales, as these castles were part of the process of conquest and subjugation of Wales. Scottish castles, though equally beautiful, have a different history and tend to have a distinctively different appearance.
Today, castles are seen as things of beauty and romance, though this often belies their violent past. In this section of the website, I will be including descriptions of some of my favorite castles, for you to enjoy. Just in case you ever manage to travel to Britain to see these castles, travel details are also included.