Last Sunday, Myself and my husband visited and stayed in Wales for the evening. On the way back we decided to pop into a castle we spotted from the roadside that instantly we both fell in love with. Its the first castle ive seen that actually still has a moat around it. I think when we visit these ruins and you see the mould in which the moat once was its not quite the same as seeing it filled with water – it really takes you back to how it would have been all them years ago.
Walking around I imagined that those who lived here, may have enjoyed dressing the castle up with candles and fancy tapestries for its guests it so regularly entertained.
As one of the last true castles built in Wales, Raglan Castle was constructed between 1435 and 1525. It was built on the site of a Norman motte castle by Sir William ap Thomas who was knighted as the Blue Knight of Gwent. He fought at the Battle of Agincourt with King Henry V in 1415. William was responsible for building the great tower at Raglan, which became known as the Yellow Tower of Gwent.
Yes, some visitors have been startled by glimpses of what they describe as a bardic figure, beckoning to them from the vicinity of the wing over which the library was once situated. He is thought to be the ghost of the castle’s librarian who, as the Civil War siege ebbed toward its inevitable conclusion, hid the valuable books and manuscripts in a secret tunnel beneath the castle. His fears proved well founded, for one of the first acts perpetrated by the enemy was the destruction of Raglan’s magnificent and priceless library. The fate of the librarian is unknown, but his guardian spirit still watches over his hidden cache of literary treasures. He was last seen in the summer of 2001, when a girl on a school trip came running from the castle, ashen-faced, insisting that she had seen him gesturing to her from a dimly lit corner.