From The Neolithic To The Sea: A Journey From The Past To The Present

Deal Castle

51° 13′ 8.29″ N, 1° 24′ 16.73″ E

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Deal Castle is located in the town of Deal in Kent. It is an artillery fortress known as a Device Fort or a Henrician Castle.

The castle was built for King Henry VII in 1539 - 40 as part of a chain of coastal defences in southern England. It is one of three castles built to protect the Downs and an area of safe anchorage which is also protected by the Goodwin Sands. The other forts were at Walmer and Sandown.

These artillery castles were built with a circular squat keep which was protected by a concentric wall with six squat semi-circular bastions arranged around the wall. The northern bastion forms the gatehouse and the other bastions were uses as canon platforms as well as the central keep. All the outer walls of the castle and bastions are rounded to both provide strength and to deflect shot more efficiently than flat walls. Over 200 cannon and gun ports were set within the walls and the entire structure was completely surrounded by a very deep, wide moat.

In 1648, during the Civil War, Deal Castle was besieged but after that it never engaged in any further military action. Fortified during the Napoleonic Wars, many alterations were made during the 18th and 19th centuries. The Governor's lodgings were rebuilt at the beginning of the 19th century, only to be destroyed again in 1941 by a German bomb in the Second World War. It was the official residence of the Captain of the Cinque Ports, but since 1951 has been owned by English Heritage.

It is thought that Anne of Cleves stayed at Deal following her voyage from Europe.