John Leland, writing in the sixteenth century, said, ‘The town of Ludlo is very propre, welle walled and gated, and standeth every way eminent from a bottom.’ I agree with him. Centuries later, the castle is still imposing.
One of my favorite parts of Ludlow castle lies within the inner bailey. The Norman round church known as the Chapel of St Mary Magdalen was an important part of the castle. Round naves were built to imitate the church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. The one at Ludlow was richly ornamented. Today visitors can walk within the nave to experience its atmosphere. I lingered for several minutes admiring the stonework.
Although the castle is a ruin, enough buildings remain to get an idea of its stateliness and sheer size. Visitors enter the castle through the outer gatehouse, which was likely the main entrance from the town. The porter’s lodge and stables were all built after 1500 and would not have existed during Richard’s time.
The minute I walked into Ludlow Castle, I felt I had stepped back in time. The castle’s immense size does not prevent the feeling of coziness that permeates the area. Climbing to the top of the tower, I had a commanding view of the surrounding countryside. From here, I could see the flowing waters of the River Teme shimmering in the sunlight. On this visit I lingered here for a time, imagining the host of residents that had walked within these walls.
**All images within the post are copyrighted by Kristie Dean** The thumbnail for Stumbleupon is courtesy of Ian Capper [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.