Warwick Castle has stood for centuries as a symbol of might and power.
From its beginnings as a stronghold of William the Conqueror to its prominence as a society social hub in the Victorian era, Warwick Castle reflects the social history of England as much as the political history. The original Mound that defended the medieval castle still remains within the grounds at Warwick. The castle today bears little resemblance to the basic fortress built by William. Over the centuries; the addition of rooms, refinements in decoration, use of landscaping and use of modern technologies like gas and electricity have transformed Warwick Castle into the magnificent stately home we know today.
Many of the original artefacts and decorations remain at Warwick, giving us a unique insight into life in the past. It is possible from seeing the display of armour and weapons in the Armoury to get a feel for the life of a foot soldier in the English Civil War. A visit to the dungeon can give an idea of the claustrophobic conditions in which prisoners were kept, sometimes year on end. A walk through the Great Hall and state rooms allows us to imagine life in Jacobean England. A tour of the Victorian Weekend rooms can give us a flavour of the simple, stress-free lives of the Victorian gentry (or the enormity of the work required by the domestic staff to keep the castle running).
Throughout her time, right from being built in the 10th century, Warwick Castle has been at the centre of things. Statesmen and politicians have walked the corridors at Warwick. Queens and kings have strolled through the gardens. Kingmakers and Kings have come from Warwick Castle and one ill-fated, short reigned Queen. England has many stately homes and castles but few have played such a central role in so many of England’s great events as has Warwick Castle.