A couple of weeks ago Vicky and I went to visit Hawarden Castle. The castle is only about ten minutes drive from home, on the the estate of former British Prime Minister William Gladstone. From the top of the castle you get a great view of what was once his house...
The castle itself is only open for a few hours on three days of the year - so it's not an easy place to visit. We had the date down in our diary for quite a while - fortunately, it was a lovely sunny day so we didn't miss our chance to go.
Hawarden castle has played important roles in the history of Wales over the years - probably most notably during the wars for independence during in the 13th century - and during the civil war between the Royalists and the Parliamentarians in the 17th Century, after which the castle was all but destroyed for fear of it being used again as a stronghold.
I'm not going to go into detail about the castle's history here because there's lots of information on the Internet and in books about it. It would take me ages to go into detail. A good place to start looking is this website all about Welsh Castles... click here to go and take a look.
It was great having the chance to look round the ruins of the castle - especially as it has been left almost untouched, unlike other castles that you can visit. This makes it interesting but it also means you have to be careful when walking around. As a writer it's good to be able to visit places like this as it can help fill your imagination. I wonder who was the last person to step through this ancient door? I wonder what lies on the other side of it??