Building a Castle

Have you ever thought about how much work goes into building a castle? I’m not talking about sand castles, although some of those are quite labor-intensive too.

I’m talking about a real, Medieval-style castle with stone towers and turrets, curtain walls, chapel, and even a proper gatehouse.

The title of this video is a bit misleading: this appears to be a long-term archaeology project, but I’m sure that everyone working on building a castle for the better part of thirty years would probably know each other pretty well by the end of it.

Wow–isn’t that amazing? They’ve been working on this project since 1997 and they still aren’t finished. Of course, the guide on the video admitted that if they were building this castle in Medieval times, the work would have gone much, much quicker. Medieval lords didn’t have to rely on the schedules of college students and Renaissance fair fans to raise their roofs: they could afford to pay the going rate for a number of professional stone masons.

In my books, I don’t think I’ve said how long it took to build Hearthing Castle.

I do have a story set at a time when parts of the castle are undergoing renovation. Currently, this is a very rough draft. I’ll have to research this more and determine a timetable.

I can, however, definitely say that the main tower was built first and is the oldest part of the castle.

Here’s the layout of the castle’s first floor and outbuildings.

When building a castle, it helps to have a blueprint.

When building a castle, it helps to have a blueprint. I color-coded this layout of Hearthing Castle to hopefully make it more accessible.

If you’d like to take the full tour, here’s a slide show I put together on Youtube:

Back to the sand castles–I’m not knocking them. Sand castles are amazing too. I’m probably never going to build a real castle, but I’ve built a few nice ones out of sand in my time–and I’d love to do it again.

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