Dover Castle from the air
|Buy this picture|
aerial photograph of Dover Castle Kent England Great Britain UK. Dover Castle as we see it today, dates from the 12th Century when Henry Ii had the great keep built. His castle replaced a previous castle which was recorded as having been destroyed during the Norman Invasion and then rebuilt by William The Conqueror. When the first castle was built is unknown as the site may have been fortified as long ago as the Iron Age. In 1216 Louis VIII of France besieged and attempted to take the castle during the Barons War but failed to take the castle. The castle was greatly modernized during the reign of Henry VIII as canon had rendered medieval castles obsolete. Thus many of the towers were shortened and armed with artillery.The Castle was held by Royalist forces during the English Civil War but the Parliamentarians managed to trick their way in and took the castle without a shot being fired.The castle was again updated during the Napoleonic Wars with new bastions and an extensive tunnel network built under the castle. During the second world war these tunnels were converted into a military command centre and underground hospital. During the cold war the tunnels were refitted to serve as a Nuclear bunker. Today the castle no longer has any military use but is one of England's top tourist attractions being visited by over 350000 visitors per year.