November 2001
Warwick Castle with Elizabeth, Jonathan & Nicola

The Entrance with bridge over the moat
Elizabeth and Jonathan from America came to London for a visit.  Together with Nicola, we went to Warwick Castle for the day.  We took the train from Marylebone Station.  It takes an hour and a half to arrive in Warwick and then there is a short walk to the Castle. It is very convenient.  The Castle is owned and run by the Madame Tussaud organisation and the wonderful building and interiors are brought to life by tasteful and informative use of waxwork figures.

The castle is far from a ruin, with walls to walk on, towers to climb up and state rooms to explore.  
There are great views over the Midlands countryside and over the town of Warwick.

Looking over the weir Inside the curtain wall
The weir on the river. Inside the curtain wall, looking back from the Ghost Tower.
View from walls across yard to The Mound, site of original castlespacer letters spacer letterhThe medieval church where the castle inhabitants went to hear Mass. The view from the walls with the gatehouse in the foreground.
From the curtain wall with The Mound, 
the site of the original castle.
Looking over the shire of Warwick.
The town church - as old as the castle.
The gardens by the river are full of colour. The old street that would have led from the castle.
Between the castle and the river. The old street sheltering in the shadow of the Castle.

One of the most famous inhabitants of the Castle was Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, known as the Kingmaker, in England's War of the Roses.  He lived there from 1449 to 1471 when he died at the Battle of Barnet.  Madame Tussaud waxworks bring to life the people and the work they did to prepare for this last battle of Richard Neville.  A man demonstrated crafts and delighted Jonathan when he let him hold weapons of the time - a long sword, a short sword, an axe and a mace.  Jackie was more impressed by her professional ancestors - the clerk and the Receiver General.

Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick The Earl's battle steed The Earl rallying his followers
The Kingmaker dressing for battle. The Kingmaker's horse 
- complete with authentic smells, tail-swishing and ear-pricking.
The Kingmaker rallying his men.

Jonathan and the sword Jonathan and the axe Jonathan and the boy archer
Jonathan tries out the sword and..  the axe and...  looks at the boy archer.

Jackie's favourite - the clerk or accountant Jackie's favourite - the senior finance man in the castle
Jackie's favourites - the accountant and..  the Receiver General, the senior finance man in the castle.

Other imaginative presentations were the Ghost Tower, where sound effects created fear in the visitor - well, it worked on me ! - and the main living rooms, which were peopled with waxworks of real visitors from a 19th century house party, including a 23-year-old Winston Churchill.

Elizabeth and Jonathan on the roof of the gatehouse Elizabeth and Nicola in the stocks
Elizabeth and Jonathan. Elizabeth and Nicola, posing for pictures in the stocks.

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