Visit to the Lordship of the Three Castles in Monmouthshire & Kilpeck Church in Herefordshire,  22nd April 2023

 Eight members of the society undertook the first of our summer visits for 2023 to the Lordship of the Three Castles in Monmouthshire, Skenfrith, Grosmont and White Castle. We made good use of Satnav to find our way along quiet lanes to the sites passing through the beautiful, unspoilt countryside of this corner of Wales. 

 These castles were first established following the Norman Conquest to defend the road from Wales to Hereford. Following a major Welsh revolt against King Stephen, the castles were combined into one Lordship and the timber fortifications replaced in stone. King John gave them to Hubert de Burgh, who further fortified them. In 1267 they passed in to Earls and later the Dukes of Lancaster. Following Edward I conquest of Wales they lost their strategic value and started to fall into disrepair.

 Skenfrith and Grosmont have churches nearby which we also visited. We crossed the border into England for an impromptu visit to the the Norman Church at Kilpeck with it's exceptional carvings around the door and on the corbels and gargoyles under the roof line.  On the way to Kilpeck, we had an excellent lunch at the Bridge Inn at Kentchurch, organised by John Merriman.

Tom Chown 28.04.2023