Tag Archives: Castle

A Bishops Castle

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Croc had learnt quite a bit about history and religion in his short visit to Wells. He was surprised how the two often went hand in hand. Darwin had a completely different kind of history to this country, and the Northern Territory certainly wasn’t the place for grand Cathedrals and huge, ancient buildings, more rock paintings and lots of red dirt! The cyclones in Darwin would flatten the stone structures he had seen so far and the heat and red dirt would stain the walls, like it did with everything in the desert regions. White was never really white in the Northern Territory!

As they rounded a corner, Bertie and Croc peeped out from the zip in the camera bag eager to see where they were going to next. They heard the birds before they saw them! Now if you have been reading Bertie and Croc’s adventures for some time you may recall Croc had a nasty introduction to swans (click here to read the post)……he wasn’t quite over this. There, in front of him, as they rounded the corner were……SWANS!

Croc tried to drive deeply into the bottom of the camera bag but he got wedged between the lens of the camera and the wall of the bag. Bertie, seeing his friend was in trouble, gave Croc’s tail a tug and pulled him loose. Bertie held Croc’s trembling claw and pointed to what was beyond the swans.

Croc’s eyes widened……it was a castle!!! He suddenly forgot the swans. Bertie explained that while Croc was wedged in the camera bag, they had stopped by a sign which told the story of a swan learning to ring a bell for his tea. The castle wasn’t a castle. It was called the Bishops Palace and the Bishop would often come out and feed the swans when he lived there a long time ago.

Croc was confused. Why would a Bishop need a palace? From what he had learnt from history so far, only Kings had palaces? Bertie explained that the Bishop was VERY powerful and that is why statues of the Bishops were next to those of the King of the Cathedral in Wells. The Bishop was worried that people would try to kill him so he built a palace with a proper portcullis and moat and EVERYTHING.

Croc was relieved when they moved away from where the swans were located. He relaxed and began to enjoy the view. It was a truly beautiful day. He began to wonder what it would be like to live in a palace……..?

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Ancient Castles and Cyclones

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It was a cloudy day in England when the two unlikely friends, Bertie and Croc, set out on another day of touring Yorkshire. Croc was being to realise how rich and diverse the UK was. He especially liked the historical buildings which he had seen so far as there was nothing like this where he came from in the Northern Territory of Australia.

Knowing Croc’s growing interest in historical architecture Bertie decided to take him to the ancient ruins of Sandal Castle. Sandal Castle sits high on a hill overlooking the River Calder and, like all good castles, has panoramic views of the surrounding town and countryside. The Castle is now just a shadow of its former glory.

The first castle to be built on the site was made from timber in 12th century. Since then Sandal Castle was rebuilt in stone and has seen many sieges, including playing a part in the historical Battle of Wakefield which was part of the War of the Roses. Following three sieges during the English Civil War in 1645 Sandal Castle became a ruin and was left to join the dust of the soldiers who had fallen at its feet.

The first thing Croc and Bertie saw was a large sign. Croc noticed the warning signs showing many different ways you could fall, he never knew there were so many! Being a Crocodile Croc had never learnt to read, Bertie did not know this. At the beginning of the tour it became clear to Bertie that, unfortunately the best bit he had planned would not be able to happen. The climb to the top of the highest point was closed and Bertie, remembering the Wellington Monument was also closed off, began to wonder if there was some mysterious power telling them not to climb tall buildings?

As they sat together on a bench Croc quietly asked Bertie if a Cyclone had destroyed the castle. Once Bertie had stopped laughing he explained to Croc that they did not get cyclones in the UK and certainly not anything near as bad as the cyclones they experienced in the Northern Territory. As they sat on the wooden bench Bertie explained to Croc about the historical battles which were fought at Sandal Castle. The longer Bertie’s story continued the wider Croc’s eyes became looking at the castle and trying to imagine the scene hundreds of years ago.