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Windsor Castle
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Windsor Castle
The thumbnails below are linked to larger pictures
The round tower The middle Ward Jubilee Garden?
Windsor Castle is one of the Queens three official residences, possibly her favorite and is the largest occupied castle in the world. A royal palace and fortress for over 900 years, the castle was first built by William the Conqueror, following his invasion of England in 1066. The original structure, in keeping with most castles from that period, was built from timber with earth fortifications and was improved upon by successive sovereigns eventually becoming the palatial royal residence seen today.

The castle became the focus of public attention in November 1992, when fire broke out in the private chapel following work on some of the State Rooms, when a spotlight caused a curtain to ignite. Nine principal rooms St Georges Chapeland over 100 other rooms were damaged or destroyed by fire, the Castle was renovated at a cost of £37 million and reopened in 1997. The restoration was a magnificent success especially St. georges Hall where the new oak roof is the largest of of its type to be built in the twentieth century.

Unfortunately photography is not permitted within the Castle so I am unable to illustrate on this page the splendor of the castle interior. The lavishly furnished State Apartments which include some of the finest works of art from the Royal Collection, are still used for state and official functions. In addition the Queen Mary's Dolls House exhibit is a must for visitors, built to a scale of 1 to 12 and containing running water and electricity, it took contributions from 1500 craftsmen and three years to complete.

The beautiful St. George's Chapel was started in 1475 by Edward IV and completed fifty years later by henry VIII. Ten monarchs are buried in the Chapel and it is the spiritual home of the Most Noble Order of the Garter, Britains highest Order of Chivalry.

The most recent addition to the Castle, is the new Jubilee landscape garden created by Chelsea Gold Medallist Tom Stuart Smith in celebration of the Queens Golden Jubilee. In addition to the State Apartments the Semi-State Rooms with some of the most splendid interiors in the castle, created by George IV in the 1820's are also open to the public but only during the winter months.

Windsor Castle is larger than you first expect and covers more than 12 acres, so it is advisable to allow at least two hours for your visit, your reward will be a truly inspiring and lavish experience.
*Link to official site for viewing Visitor Information*
The Norman Gate The Quadrangle St  Gearge's Gate