Conwy Castle

Conwy, north Wales; castle and walled town. Maintained by CADW.

Construction started in May of 1283, including the re-siting of a Cistercian abbey. Construction was substantially finished by 1287; minor work continued until 1292 or possibly later.

Built by King Edward I of England to consolidate his victory over the Welsh, Conwy is one of seventeen castles built or rebuilt for that purpose. Conwy was considered as the seat of one of the shires that Edward created for administration of the newly conquered lands, and the castle was conceived with this in mind. Caernarfon eventually was chosen as the county seat.

During the Civil War, Conwy was garrisoned; besieged, it surrendered to the Parliamentarians in August 1646. The Roundhead governor kept Conwy on a war footing for the next five years, when the castle was ordered to be slighted. After the Restoration, the owner decided in 1665 to sell the timber and lead from the now-unteneble ruin.