By Ben Wheeler
A SERIES of stunning retro-postcards depicting some of England’s finest castles showcase the sights American visitors would have wanted to write home about over a century ago.
The Game of Thrones style-photos show the famous strongholds looking sensational, sat in their idyllic and breath-taking locations across the country from Dover to Durham. The new series of the hit HBO series has just aired this week.
Other places pictured include Bolsover Castle in Derbyshire, Corfe Castle in Dorset and Watermouth Castle in Ilfracombe.
The nostalgic snaps, of which the originals date from between 1890 and 1900, are evocative of a different era when Blighty was an altogether different place to the one it is today.
All the ancient forts, many of which are now open to the public for a fun family day out in the sun, are of course steeped in some altogether more gruesome history.
For example, Hastings Castle, built shortly after the invasion of William the Conqueror in 1066, is home to the supposedly haunted ‘Whispering Dungeons’.
Deal Castle in Kent played host to several battles during the Second English Civil War between 1648 and 1649, initially being seized by pro-Royalist insurgents, only to be retaken by Parliamentary forces after months of fighting, resulting in hundreds of deaths.
It is said that during the Jacobite war that prisoners kept at Carlisle Castle were kept in such appalling conditions that they were reduced to licking the dungeon walls for moisture, now coined ‘licking stones’.
The dungeons of Warwick castle were equally unforgiving to their forsaken guests, where Earls of the time would throw French prisoners, most of whom were never seen again.
However, one of Warwick’s owners met an untimely end himself, Sir Fulke Greville was stabbed by a servant and died weeks after the incident having had his wounds treated with pig fat which then turned rancid and spread infection. His ghost is said to haunt the quarters in which he resided to this day.