Wednesday, 11 September 2013

11th September 2013 Burton Green Bash

A bit of historical culture today. Kenilworth Castle, or rather the ruins of them. It is only 2 miles from my house so an ideal place for pictures on a rainy afternoon.  Thanks to the staff on the gate of the castle for letting me take my bike in.

Kenilworth Castle

Situated just north of the town centre this castle, although now in ruins, has played a significant part in English history. The main tower was built in the 11th century and added to until after the Tudor era. It was the subject of a six month long siege in 1266, the longest in British history, it formed a base for Lancastrian operations during the Wars of the Roses, it was the scene of the removal of Edward II from the throne and the site where the French insult to Henry V sparked the Agincourt campaign in 1415. The castle was partially destroyed by Parliamentary forces during the English Civil war to prevent it being used as a military stronghold. It is now managed by English Heritage and is a popular tourist attraction.  The picture below is of the stables, now an information centre and cafe.

Leicester's Gatehouse

This part of the castle was built in 1571 as part of a grand plan to woo Elizabeth I. It is now set up as it may have looked when the last residents lived in it, in the 1930s, and there is an exhibition on the love story between Robert Dudley, the Earl of Leicester, and the Queen.

Elizabethan Garden

For more than 400 years, these magnificent gardens have been lost to the world. Now restored to the original and reopened in 2009, they are a real jewel in the crown at the castle. The centrepiece of the garden is this marble fountain. It stands 18 feet high and is made of Carrera marble. The gardens themselves were originally created as part of the Earl of Dudley's plan to marry the Queen. He failed.


Left the castle and carried on north through Burton Green, (plenty of posters there protesting about the proposed hiogh speed rail link). I like the 'Keep Burton Green ' one. Very clever. Through Canley and back past the University of Warwick to Kenilworth. This milestone is on the corner of Gibbett Hill Road and the Coventry Road by the traffic lights.

A bit of a miserable day in the drizzle but clocked up just under 17 miles on a new route. 

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