Tuesday, 27 October 2015

A Trip to Warwick Castle

We are going to jump back a bit in time today to this past May when my sister Sheryl and her husband Bob were here visiting us in merry old England.  Sheryl said she wanted to see a castle.  I took her and Bob to the ruins of Ashby castle which are just down the road from here (and which I shared with you way way back in the Reflections of January in England post).  Ashby Castle is very interesting to see and it’s history is great to hear, but since they had come all the way from Wisconsin to visit I wanted to share a more complete castle with them, one you can go inside of and really get the feel for what life may have been like hundreds of years ago during medieval times.  So one sunny spring morning we set off for Warwick Castle.

We had a great day visiting the castle.  The girls and I really enjoyed having some family to sight see with in this country that is our home for a couple of years.  Warwick Castle was originally built in the 12th century but lots of work has been done to it over the hundreds of years since and additions have been added which has maintained it’s integrity and it is still largely intact.   

The setting is beautiful, the grounds are beautiful, the castle is beautiful, the weather was beautiful...

 and except for getting a bit lost trying to find it, the entire day at Warwick Castle was beautiful.

What did Ellie and Leah like best about visiting Warwick Castle?  I think their answer would be the peacocks that were strutting around the gardens.  

But if you asked Bob what he liked best, I think he would have a different answer.  At the very end of the afternoon, right before the castle was to close for the day, we got to see a spectacle that will make every one of my brothers, brother-in-laws and nephews jealous – the real live firing of the Warwick Trebuchet!  

For those of you who may not know, a trebuchet is a type of catapult and the one at Warwick Castle is one of the largest in the world.  We watched as it took four people several minutes to lift the counterweight by running inside the huge wooden wheels that are on either side like hamsters in a cage.  And once everything was in place, a boulder was launched high through the air by the Trebuchet, right before our eyes.  It was all over quickly, but it was quite something to hear the story of how these heavy, bulky machines that were very modern in their time were dragged hundreds of miles to battles, and how there were dire consequences for the crews if they weren’t able to load and fire these beasts in a timely fashion.  

 And that was our beautiful day at Warwick Castle.

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