Berkeley Castle

Oxford & the Cotswolds

This superb red-stone castle has been home to the Berkeleys for nearly 900 years, and little has changed since it was built as a sturdy Norman fortress. Edward II was imprisoned here in 1327 and swiftly died, probably murdered on the orders of his wife and her lover. Highlights include its central 12th-century keep, the King’s Gallery, complete with Edward’s cell and dungeon, and the spectacular medieval Great Hall, lined with tapestries. Free 45-minute guided tours run every 30 minutes.

The traditional story that Edward was killed using a red-hot poker is now discredited, and some historians even argue that he didn’t die here at all, and lived out his life as a hermit in Europe.

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