Bishop’s Castle – A Charming Town in Shropshire, England
The small market town of Bishop’s Castle in England’s Shropshire has become a popular tourist destination. So naturally I was inclined to pay it a visit!
I travelled almost two miles east of the Wales-England border to reach it and on arrival was greeted with a sign that said “Walkers are Welcome town”. My main purpose of visit was as usual undefined; however, I wanted to grasp as much about the history, culture and everything else that the place had to offer and was not disappointed at all!
Bishop Castle’s History
I had once read somewhere that it was in Saxon times when Edwin Shakehead gave a part of his vast lands to the bishop of Hereford as a sign of gratefulness for being cured at the Saint Ethelbert’s tomb. The castle was built there, and since then came under attack and siege many times before it started to deteriorate in the early seventeenth century.
Documents preserved over the course of time narrate how the surroundings got flattened and the castle started to lose its charm. Later on it was converted into a ‘Princely Chandos’ by James Brydges, Duke of Chandos.
When I saw the old castle, all that remained was a 10m long coursed wall made up of stones overgrown with ivy. But that just made it look all the more appealing to me! The town’s initial layout shows that it was initially made up of 46 burgage plots along with small lanes that ran through tiny alleys nearby the Church street, Station street and the Union Street.
Places of Interest in Bishop’s Castle
Given the attention that it has drawn globally plenty of facilities for tourists, residents and visitors have been developed including hotels, cafés and museums. These include the Rail Museum and two micro breweries that also bring great income to the place, apart from a variety of shops and local produce stores.
I had the chance to take a tour of the two micro breweries located in the town area which included the Three Tuns Brewery under the ownership of John Roberts Company and the Six Bells Brewery. The hotel where I stayed gave me the opportunity of being close to history as it was located just on the outer bailey of the Castle.
The place is a tourist’s delight and just like the myriad colours in which its buildings are painted, the place is a rainbow of enjoyment and fun!