Castell Coch. South Wales.
Castell Coch (Welsh for Red Castle) is a 19th-century Gothic Revival castle built above the village of Tongwynlais in South Wales. The first castle on the site was built by the Normans after 1081, to protect the newly conquered town of Cardiff and control the route along the Taff Gorge river.
While resting on ancient foundations, Castell Coch is relatively modern, the by-product of a vivid Victorian imagination, assisted by untold wealth. The ‘eccentric genius’ William Burges was given free rein by his paymaster, John Patrick Crichton-Stuart, the 3rd marquess of Bute, to create a rural retreat to complement the opulence of his main residence, Cardiff Castle. He didn’t hold back. Dazzling ceilings, over-the-top furnishings and furniture were liberally applied.
Detailed architectural drawings still survive today and following Burges’s death in 1881, colleagues faithfully continued work on the interiors for another ten years.
Photo by Adam Walters.
Source: CADW Wales