Tiny Castle, Big Impact – St. Quentins Castle

St. Quentins has many names. You say St. Quentins and I say St Quintin’s. It’s also known as Llanblethian, and Castell Llanfleiddan. It sits in what appears to be a quiet, out of the way village in Llanblethian, Cowbridge, Wales.

It’s thought to have started out as a ringwork with a bank and ditch in around 1102 with the stonework being added in the late 12th century and then reinforced in the early 14th by the Earl Gilbert de Clare. However, Gilbert was killed before the castle was completed, and because the castle lacks certain features, it is possible that the building work was discontinued as a result of the Earl’s death. By 1740 it was was said to be in a ruinous state.

The gatehouses did see some use as a prison in the 15th century and was briefly occupied as a dwelling in 1820.

A Romantic Norman Ruin – Grosmont Castle

Third Largest Settlement You’ve Never Heard Of (In South Wales). In 1405 Grosmont was the scene of a major battle in the rebellion of Owain Glynd┼Ár. Rhys Gethin, Glyndwr’s ally, raised a force of around 8,000 men who descended on Grosmont burning the town to the ground. At the time Grosmont was the this largest settlement in South Wales but the battle saw the burning of maybe 100 homes. Grosmont never recovered. In retaliation, a force dispatched by Prince Henry who would become Henry V, and led by John Talbot, 1st Earl of Shrewsbury, Sir William Newport and Sir John Greynder from Hereford, intercepted the Welsh and defeated them, killing between 800 and 1000 men. Grosmont Castle, like its sisters White Castle and Skenfrith Castle, is a Norman castle built shortly after 1066 to protect the route from Wales to Hereford.