Portchester Castle

Portchester Castle Portchester Castle
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Looking for a fun family day out? Visit Portchester Castle in Hampshire, South East England. It provides the perfect setting for a relaxed, fun, historic day out! The castle’s commanding location has made it a major factor in the Solent's defences for hundreds of years. The most impressive and best-preserved of the Roman 'Saxon Shore' forts, Portchester Castle was originally built in the late 3rd century. An exhibition in the keep interprets the history of the castle and Portchester village, and displays finds excavated on site. The inclusive audio tour explains life in the castle over the centuries.

Join us on Friday 15 Nov as the 'Being Human' festival comes to Portchester Castle.We'll be hosting a discussion between...
07/11/2019

Join us on Friday 15 Nov as the 'Being Human' festival comes to Portchester Castle.

We'll be hosting a discussion between sound artist Elaine Mitchener and the researchers whose work she used to create the sound installation | Les Murs sont Témoins |These Walls Bear Witness | which you can listen to here at Portchester Castle.

Find out how the remarkable stories of the thousands of free black French prisoners from the Caribbean held at Portchester Castle during the French Revolution intertwine with those from mainland France held there during the Napoleonic wars: a unique – and largely forgotten - chapter in Franco-British history.

You can pick up tickets for this activity here. Please note, as this activity is part of the 'Being Human' festival, a ticket charge applies to members and non members of English Heritage. https://beinghumanfestival.org/event/portchesters-prisoners-of-war/

22/10/2019
Speaking with Shadows Episode 2 Teaser

Speaking with Shadows is a new English Heritage podcast telling stories of the people that history forgot. In episode two of the six part series, presenter Josie Long travels here to Portchester, and meets historians Abigail Coppins and Steve Martin, and local councillor Nick Walker, to learn about the Caribbean prisoners of war who were imprisoned in the castle during the Napoleonic wars.

Check out the teaser below, and catch the full episode on our page here! ➡️ http://bit.ly/SpeakingwithShadows

Huge congratulations are in order for all involved in the work to recreate the theatre play Roseliska, performed by Fren...
17/10/2019

Huge congratulations are in order for all involved in the
work to recreate the theatre play Roseliska, performed by French prisoners of war at the Castle over 200 years ago, which has been named as a winner in the Association for Heritage Interpretation awards 2019 in the category of Events and Activities.

The Association for Heritage Interpretation recognizes the best in heritage interpretation, so it's a real feather in the cap for the team at Portchester, our colleagues in Interpretation, and also for University of Warwick and Past Pleasures Ltd, without whom the project would not have been possible.

Read the full list of winners here ➡️ https://ahi.org.uk/awards/

Our work with University of Warwick and Past Pleasures Ltd on the recreated theatre play Roseliska, performed by French ...
20/09/2019

Our work with University of Warwick and Past Pleasures Ltd on the recreated theatre play Roseliska, performed by French prisoners of war at the Castle over 200 years ago, has been shortlisted in the AHI awards as a potential winner in the category of events and activities.

The Association for Heritage Interpretation recognizes the best in heritage interpretation, so to be recognized in such prestigious awards is a real feather in the cap for all who worked on the project.

Read the full award shortlist here ➡️ https://ahi.org.uk/awards/

Tomorrow at Portchester; we'll be welcoming Rain or Shine Theatre Co for a performance of Shakespeare's As you like it. ...
30/08/2019
Ticket for As You Like It

Tomorrow at Portchester; we'll be welcoming Rain or Shine Theatre Co for a performance of Shakespeare's As you like it. Gates open at 6.30 for the start of the performance at 7.30pm. Don't miss it!

Grab tickets here ➡️ https://bit.ly/2IiG9s3

Find tickets for Rain or Shine Theatre Company showing at the Portchester Castle - Portchester, GB Saturday Aug 31, 6:30PM Tickets starting at £7.85 available via www.ticketweb.uk

Don't miss this weekend's performance at Portchester Castle. Rain or Shine Theatre Co will be hosting a performance of S...
27/08/2019

Don't miss this weekend's performance at Portchester Castle. Rain or Shine Theatre Co will be hosting a performance of Shakespeare's perfect pastoral comedy, As you like it!

Tickets available here ➡️ https://bit.ly/2IiG9s3

An evocative new artistic sound installation opens today at Portchester Castle!| Les Murs Sont Témoins | These Walls Bea...
08/07/2019

An evocative new artistic sound installation opens today at Portchester Castle!

| Les Murs Sont Témoins | These Walls Bear Witness | has been created by artist and musician Elaine Mitchener, pictured below with partners from the University of Warwick, in response to Portchester's history as a place of incarceration, creativity and freedom, and uses historic texts to bring the past to life.

Find out more by reading out news story, and visit to see the installation, which will be available for you to enjoy until November 2019. ➡️ https://bit.ly/2XvO7Zf

Big thanks to Elaine Mitchener, University of Warwick & Flipside Sound

06/06/2019

Join us for an evening of Outdoor Theatre at Portchester Castle this summer. We'll be welcoming Rain or Shine Theatre Co for a performance of Shakespeare's 'As You Like It'! Get your tickets here ➡️ https://bit.ly/2IiG9s3

The next open day at our neighbouring site Fort Brockhurst is coming up this Saturday. The site can now be visited every...
04/06/2019

The next open day at our neighbouring site Fort Brockhurst is coming up this Saturday. The site can now be visited every second Saturday of the month! ➡️https://bit.ly/2VyVPB7

10/05/2019

A heads up for our local friends looking for a day out this weekend; from tomorroy nearby Fort Brockhurst is opening for visitors, second Saturday of each month 11am - 3pm (last entry 2.30pm). It's a rare chance to see the interior of the fort, normally exterior viewing only. Make a full day out by combining with a visit to see us here at Portchester Castle!

Check out our page on Fort Brockhurst here ➡️ https://bit.ly/2VyVPB7

So much to enjoy at Portchester this Half Term! Explore a magnificent keep and ruins inside breathtaking Roman walls. En...
14/02/2019

So much to enjoy at Portchester this Half Term! Explore a magnificent keep and ruins inside breathtaking Roman walls. Enjoy an immersive audio tour, or discover our exhibition telling the story of French-Caribbean prisoners of war held at the castle, and the theatre they created.

We're open every day of the holiday. Plan your visit here ➡️ https://bit.ly/2xY5qDA

Portchester Castle's cover photo
23/11/2018

Portchester Castle's cover photo

A beautiful and highly atmospheric Halloween snap of St. Mary's Church within the castle walls, kindly sent to us by pho...
01/11/2018

A beautiful and highly atmospheric Halloween snap of St. Mary's Church within the castle walls, kindly sent to us by photographer Martin Urch.

Save the date; Rain or Shine Theatre co. will return to Portchester on 31 August 2019 for a performance of Shakespeare's...
29/10/2018

Save the date; Rain or Shine Theatre co. will return to Portchester on 31 August 2019 for a performance of Shakespeare's 'As you Like It'.

Join one of Shakespeare's most famous heroines, Rosalind, as she makes her way in a world full of power, jealousy and tyranny.

In fear for her life and in search of true love, she flees her heritage with her cousin Celia and fool Touchstone.
Will disguising herself as a country lad lead her to a new life full of hope, laughter, and her banished father?

Keep an eye on our events listings for more info!

Portchester Castle's cover photo
29/10/2018

Portchester Castle's cover photo

Don't miss the chance to visit Spooky Portchester Castle! Halloween at the Castle carries on throughout half-term. With ...
25/10/2018

Don't miss the chance to visit Spooky Portchester Castle! Halloween at the Castle carries on throughout half-term. With ghost tours, spooky games, and our infamous costume competition, you're in for a frighteningly fun day out! https://bit.ly/2NPov0C

Our Halloween Spooky Castle kicks off here from Saturday. Make sure your little horrors come in their best Halloween cos...
18/10/2018

Our Halloween Spooky Castle kicks off here from Saturday. Make sure your little horrors come in their best Halloween costume; we've got special prizes to give away to those with the most frightening attire! https://bit.ly/2NPov0C

This half-term, bring your little terrors to Portchester and join the ghost hunter on a terrifying tour of the keep. Hav...
11/10/2018

This half-term, bring your little terrors to Portchester and join the ghost hunter on a terrifying tour of the keep. Have fun with ghostly games and creepy crafts, or take part in the Halloween costume competition. Each day we'll be giving prizes for those who scare us the most! https://bit.ly/2NPov0C

Portchester Castle's cover photo
09/10/2018

Portchester Castle's cover photo

Join us for a frighteningly fun day out this half-term, as Portchester Castle turns Spooky for Halloween! https://bit.ly...
04/10/2018

Join us for a frighteningly fun day out this half-term, as Portchester Castle turns Spooky for Halloween! https://bit.ly/2NPov0C

Big thanks to Raymond Frampton for sharing his spectacular shots of Portchester as the seasons change. Visit us this Oct...
03/10/2018

Big thanks to Raymond Frampton for sharing his spectacular shots of Portchester as the seasons change. Visit us this October and share your own autumn snaps with us here! https://bit.ly/2xY5qDA

We were delighted to find that the castle had inspired some GCSE students from Portchester Community School when making ...
28/09/2018

We were delighted to find that the castle had inspired some GCSE students from Portchester Community School when making their artwork. Hearty congratulations on some fantastic work, and many thanks to teacher Josie Grew for sharing them with us!

Portchester Castle's cover photo
05/09/2018

Portchester Castle's cover photo

Hoping all who attended the Rain or Shine Theatre Co performance of Much ado About Nothing here at the castle had a grea...
03/09/2018

Hoping all who attended the Rain or Shine Theatre Co performance of Much ado About Nothing here at the castle had a great time!

Penultimate show to a sell out audience at Portchester Castle! Such a beautiful evening! Just one more show to go, so catch us at Oliver’s, Painswick. 🌈☀️🎭☀️🌈

We love these; Portchester, except straight out of a fairytale. 😍
03/09/2018

We love these; Portchester, except straight out of a fairytale. 😍

Tomorrow at Portchester Castle, dig out your hampers and load up your picnic bags for Rain or Shine Theatre co.'s 20th A...
30/08/2018

Tomorrow at Portchester Castle, dig out your hampers and load up your picnic bags for Rain or Shine Theatre co.'s 20th Anniversary performance of Shakespeare's classic comedy 'Much ado about Nothing'! https://buff.ly/2vNYAQ3

Our outdoor performance of Shakespeare's Much ado about Nothing, is only a week away! From the dastardly Don John, to th...
24/08/2018

Our outdoor performance of Shakespeare's Much ado about Nothing, is only a week away! From the dastardly Don John, to the daft Sergeant Dogberry, join the people of Messina as they find love, scupper mischievous plots and celebrate new found peace across the world!.

Join us this Summer, as we bring you revelers, rascals and romance with a performance featuring the very best of Shakesp...
20/08/2018

Join us this Summer, as we bring you revelers, rascals and romance with a performance featuring the very best of Shakespeare's wit and wisdom; Much ado about Nothing, at Portchester this summer. Performance info, times and tickets can all be found here: https://buff.ly/2PeWd0w

At the end of this month, Rain or Shine theatre co. will host a unique performance of one of Shakespeare's best loved co...
16/08/2018

At the end of this month, Rain or Shine theatre co. will host a unique performance of one of Shakespeare's best loved comedies, Much ado about Nothing, here at Portchester Castle. Tickets are available here: https://buff.ly/2OIkGdD

In the blistering heat Legions came to fight, beautiful majestic birds of prey flew in the falconry arena and an amazing...
05/08/2018

In the blistering heat Legions came to fight, beautiful majestic birds of prey flew in the falconry arena and an amazing day was had by all. Here for one more day don't miss out on the incredible Clash Of The Romans here at Portchester Castle from 10am - 5pm.

Our thanks to Alan O'Donovan Countzero Photography for the images

In the blistering heat Legions came to fight, beautiful majestic birds of prey flew in the falconry arena and an amazing day was had by all. Here for one more day don't miss out on the incredible Clash Of The Romans here at Portchester Castle from 10am - 5pm.

Our thanks to Alan O'Donovan Countzero Photography for the images

The Roman army of the second century was the most successful the world has ever known, with an empire spanning from Afri...
26/07/2018

The Roman army of the second century was the most successful the world has ever known, with an empire spanning from Africa to Hadrians Wall. In just over a week, join us at Portchester as two teams of Roman soldiers from this incredible era clash head on in a contest of strength and skill! https://bit.ly/2y1SfDX

During the #LoveCastles season, we're encouraging budding sandcastle sculptors to share their sandcastles with us; Join ...
16/07/2018
Sandcastle Competition | English Heritage

During the #LoveCastles season, we're encouraging budding sandcastle sculptors to share their sandcastles with us; Join in for the chance to win prizes including holiday stays at some of our historic places! More info here:

We're on the lookout for England's best sandcastle builders this summer! Think you've got what it takes? Download our #LoveCastles flag below, fly it on your sandy stronghold and share a photo with us for your chance to win a holiday at a historic site.

Today, English Heritage unveiled the Ultimate Sandcastle at Dover Castle in Kent. Inspired by some of the best aspects o...
13/07/2018

Today, English Heritage unveiled the Ultimate Sandcastle at Dover Castle in Kent. Inspired by some of the best aspects of historic castle design and sculpted by expert builders Sand in Your Eye, the reveal of this amazing sculpture marks the start of our #LoveCastles season. Over July and August, we're hoping to raise awareness of the 66 castles in the care of English Heritage, including Portchester Castle, and encourage the public to help us conserve them for future generations to enjoy. Find out more about #LoveCastles and how you can get involved: https://buff.ly/2JkzJXH

You can see the parchmarks we posted about yesterday really clearly on this excellent panorama. Thanks to Ayrton Primary...
13/07/2018

You can see the parchmarks we posted about yesterday really clearly on this excellent panorama. Thanks to Ayrton Primary Academy for sharing!

Portchester Castle's cover photo
13/07/2018

Portchester Castle's cover photo

Graffiti Greetings!We think of graffiti as a modern unwelcome act of vandalism. But historical graffiti bucks this trend...
13/07/2018

Graffiti Greetings!

We think of graffiti as a modern unwelcome act of vandalism. But historical graffiti bucks this trend, it offers a unique insight into how an individual was feeling at that precise moment in history - it’s a written time capsule of a day in their life. Soldiers in particular have been keen to leave their mark. from ancient wars to modern conflicts, the trend of carving your name for others to remember you by is an unofficial and poignant type of epitaph. Fascinating examples can be seen at both Fort Brockhurst in Gosport and at Portchester Castle. Our graffiti artists carved their names in brick during WW2, National Service in the 1950s and in stone during imprisonment in the Napoleonic Era....What do you think you would have written on the walls if you had been a soldier alongside them?

Visit Fort Brockhurst this Sat 14th July, 11am to 3pm and Portchester Castle to see these remarkable signatures in stone.

Portchester Castle info: https://buff.ly/2zzhRZI
Fort Brockhurst: https://buff.ly/2mbiSxy

With soaring temperatures strange patterns have been emerging in the ground. Wild theories from alien landing strips to ...
12/07/2018

With soaring temperatures strange patterns have been emerging in the ground. Wild theories from alien landing strips to fairy highways have been suggested...

But happily this phenomenon is purely archaeological, the ‘Parchmarks’ first spotted in 1938 are in fact the footprint of a 400 year old Tudor Storehouse that used to stand in the Outer Bailey.

Normally all traces of it are invisible but as the grass has died back the skeleton of the buildings foundations has surfaced. The grass grows (and dies back) at different rates depending on the depth of the soil hence why the outline of the storehouses walls are a different colour to the surrounding grass.

To learn more about this fascinating archaeology and for the best view visit Portchester Castle! https://bit.ly/2kbHokj

Pictured are the parchmarks, along with an artists impression of how the storehouse may have stood within the castle walls.

Portchester will be hosting Access All Areas, an event providing free activities to 11-16 year olds in the Fareham area....
27/06/2018

Portchester will be hosting Access All Areas, an event providing free activities to 11-16 year olds in the Fareham area. There's loads of great fun planned, from Segways and sailing to a disco dome; if your kids want to take part then register them here via https://buff.ly/2yIO547

Last Thursday we were lucky enough to have the band of the Royal Marines perform on site to accompany the inauguration o...
26/06/2018

Last Thursday we were lucky enough to have the band of the Royal Marines perform on site to accompany the inauguration of the new High Sheriff for Hampshire, Mark Thistlethwayte. The office of High Sheriff dates to Saxon times, making it the oldest secular appointment next to that of the crown!

In a week's time on June 20, don't miss the chance to meet English Heritage Curator Abigail Coppins here at Portchester ...
13/06/2018

In a week's time on June 20, don't miss the chance to meet English Heritage Curator Abigail Coppins here at Portchester to hear her talk about the research and stories that have inspired our new permanent exhibition here at the castle. Part of the Portsmouth Festivities 2018, which you can learn more about here; https://buff.ly/2IYyzT9

Each year, the 1 - 7 June is National Volunteers' week, so we're taking the chance to spread the word about three opport...
06/06/2018
Portchester Castle Visitor Volunteer | English Heritage

Each year, the 1 - 7 June is National Volunteers' week, so we're taking the chance to spread the word about three opportunities we have here at Portchester. If you want to lend your skills to help care for the castle and keep it open for future generations to enjoy, find out more below:

Visitor Volunteer:
Explainer Volunteer: https://buff.ly/2sGaKYQ
Education Volunteer: https://buff.ly/2sGaLMo

Help us bring the castle to life for visitors

Lots of fun was had by the team this past weekend at the Open Air Vintage day here outside the Castle. Team members Mari...
30/05/2018

Lots of fun was had by the team this past weekend at the Open Air Vintage day here outside the Castle. Team members Marie and Carrie manned our stall with a vintage theme! Congrats to Every Little Detail Events Ltd on a great day.

We hope you've all been enjoying the recent sunny weather as much as we have! It's great to get outside and enjoy a picn...
21/05/2018

We hope you've all been enjoying the recent sunny weather as much as we have! It's great to get outside and enjoy a picnic at the castle. If you're planning on doing just that, can we please ask that you don't use disposable barbeques within the inner bailey. It scorches the grass and can affect impacted archaeology below the surface. Have a sunny week everyone! :)

Dumbledore and an Ewok, spotted and snapped at the recent Portchester Fun Day by team member Marie-Ann Shepherd. If you ...
14/05/2018

Dumbledore and an Ewok, spotted and snapped at the recent Portchester Fun Day by team member Marie-Ann Shepherd. If you came along this year, who was your favourite costume of the day? :D

We're looking forward to taking part in the Portsmouth Festivities with a talk from curator Abigail Coppins on the new e...
14/05/2018
Portsmouth Festivities

We're looking forward to taking part in the Portsmouth Festivities with a talk from curator Abigail Coppins on the new exhibition here at the Castle!

Book tickets for the talk on the new exhibition Black Prisoners of War at Portchester Castle, curated by Abigail Coppins, who explains how the prisoners were captured, how they were treated at the castle, and what happened to them after their release

Address

Church Road, Portchester, Hampshire - PO16 9QW
Portchester
PO16 9QW

Opening Hours

Saturday 10:00 - 16:00
Sunday 10:00 - 16:00

Telephone

02392 378291

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