Arundel Castle is 950 years old

By | Category: Travel destinations

Arundel Castle

Anyone driving along the A27 in West Sussex can hardly fail to see Arundel Castle standing proud on the hill looking down over the town of the same name and all the land looking down to the English Channel.

This year it celebrates the 950th anniversary of its initial creation and it is still a home lived in by the Dukes of Norfolk, a family that has been intimately connected with the politics, machinations and change in England for centuries.

As one of the leading Catholic families in the country, their role in Tudor times when Henry VIII established the Church of England was of importance as they backed supported attempts to restore Catholicism. More than one member of the family ended on the scaffold after upsetting one of the Tudor monarchs but, somehow, they retained influence, titles and the castle. More recently it was the 16th Duke, Bernard who was responsible for organisation some key events in British twentieth century history such as the coronation of George VI and Elizabeth II, the funeral of Sir Winston Churchill and George VI. The Dukes are still hereditary earl marshals of England.

Spring flowers bloom in the gardens in tthe 2017 Tulip Festival at Arundel Castle. ©Julia Claxton

Given that link with history it is not surprising that Arundel Castle is one of the most visited stately homes in the UK and there is plenty to occupy you inside the castle for a day.

But this month and next is time best spent outside for it coincides with the annual tulip festival when over 60,000 flowers will bloom in the gardens. Considered one of the most impressive flower festivals in the UK, this year’s festival has 120 named varieties of tulip on display including ‘Pink Impression’, the deep rose pink petals of which will frame the enchanting water rill ponds and La Belle Epoque’, a new variety for the Castle which is the most incredible coffee mousse colour, flushed with pink.

 

 

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