Yesterday, between torrential rain showers, we visited Southsea Castle with our friends Lynn and Finn. We had coffee in the lovely coffee shop there, and then the children explored the castle. Hannah wouldn't go into the tunnels as she thought they looked too dark and scary, but she did go up to the top of the tower to look at the view.
We all threw pennies into the wishing well and made wishes!
And then Hannah and Finn played on the cannon until the next rain storm hit and we ran for the car!!!
Built in 1544, the Castle was part of a series of fortifications
constructed by Henry VIII around England's coasts to protect the country
from invaders. Barely was the work completed when Henry VIII's
flagship, the Mary Rose, tragically sank in front of the Castle. During
the English Civil War, nearly a century later, the Castle was captured
for the only time in its history, by Parliamentarian forces.
Over the centuries, Southsea Castle's defences were strengthened so
that it could continue to protect Portsmouth. In the 19th Century a
tunnel was built to defend the Castle moat. Visitors can still enter the
tunnel and see how the Castle would have been defended against
The Castle has had many other uses besides defence. For a while it was a
military prison. A lighthouse was built in the 1820s, and is still in
use by shipping today. In 1960 the Castle left military service. It was
acquired by Portsmouth City Council, which restored the Castle to its
19th century appearance.