Cheshire has a number of well-preserved and downright romantic castles, abbeys and stately homes. These date mainly from late-medieval times and into the 17th and 18th centuries, and not a great deal has survived intact from before the 13th Century. Halton castle is an exception to this, as it's one of only two Norman castles to have survived in Cheshire. If you're passing through Runcorn, or are staying at a Cheshire hotel in the area, be sure to pay this fascinating survivor a visit. It has some unusual features and also a beautiful natural setting.
Cheshire Hotels for Halton Castle
Halton Castle built shortly after the Norman Conquest of 1066 and is closely linked to nearby Norton Priory, which was built in 1115. Some of the castle's lords would have been buried in the priory church and left sums of money to it. The original motte and bailey castle was replaced by a more permanent stone one in the 12th Century, with the site retained because of its commanding position on a hill. When you visit Halton Castle from your Cheshire hotel or B&B today you can get a real feel for the place, and imagine what the old timber castle must have looked like soon after the Normans arrived on these shores.
Visit Halton Castle from Cheshire Hotels
Apart from representing an almost unique link with our early Norman past, Halton Castle had several famous residents over the succeeding centuries. These included John of Gaunt and the future usurping King Henry IV, Henry Bolingbroke, father of Henry V. The castle was besieged twice during the English Civil War, and when the war ended it was dismantled to a large extent. By the 17th Century it had fallen into ruin. It was later used as a Courthouse and the Lock Ups in the lower bailey date from that time, in the 18th century. Halton Castle was in fact used as a prison for much of its existence, with monks and even high-ranking priests from Norton Priory being banged up here during the Dissolution! It makes an interesting place to visit if you are staying in a Cheshire hotel in the area.