Placed in the heart of Cheshire is Beeston Castle, you travel down windy country lanes to reach the entrance. As you drive toward the castle you can just see it peeking over the face of the craggy hills.
Boasting spectacular views, Beeston is one of the most dramatically sited medieval castles in England. Many castles are built on rocky hills, but Beeston takes this to an extreme: the heart of the castle is situated on a huge crag of sandstone that offers breathtaking vistas.
Beeston Castle is thought to be one of the most dramatic ruins in the English landscape. On a clear day, you can see all the way from the Pennines to the Welsh mountains.
We went for a visit now some of the English Heritage sites have reopened, and what a day it was. Glorious sunshine, amazing weather, and cows watching us having a picnic… what more could you want?
You can climb to the top of the castle, see the views from the whole of the North-West as you reach the top and peer down into the spiraling well below. The beautiful habitat and surrounding the landscape is a paradise for walkers and nature lovers.
Beeston Castle has over 800-years of history, a replica Bronze Age roundhouse and a 40-acre woodland, there something for everyone to enjoy. Built by Ranulf, 6th Earl of Chester, in the 1220s, the castle was originally an Iron Age hillfort.
The site at Beeston Castle has evidence of early human activity as flint tools dating to the Neolithic period have been found by the English Heritage.
There is also evidence of the early Bronze Age as burial mounds and funerary materials from the lower part of the crag also have been found.
Henry III seized the castle in 1237 and it then remained in royal ownership until the 16th century. In the Civil War, Beeston Castle withstood a long siege in 1644–5, before being surrendered by the Royalists and partially demolished.
In the 18th century, the site at Beeston Castle was quarried for rock, and the outer gatehouse was partly demolished to allow carts to come and go from the quarry site.
Over the decades the Castle has changed owners many times from royals to architects and then English Heritage took the site over in 1984.
Today, English Heritage lavish the castle with the attention it deserves and it is open to the public.
The steep climb up to the castle was well worth it for the views at the top, which meant
we took lots of wonderful photographs.
After we had descended the rocky crag, both of us said that our legs felt a little wobbly when we got back to the car park. It is definitely a walking boots day out, the woodland walk can get muddy and a bit squelchy, but you get to see the extent of the grounds and experience nature around you.
I would definitely recommend visiting Beeston Castle, apart from the beautiful views, there’s a long woodland walk that takes you around the outside walls of the castle.
I hope this has inspired you to visit an English Heritage site and explore the history of our amazing country.