Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Motte, Land & Leagues and Great Hall

Motte :- A group of trees nestle together on a small hill in the middle of a flat lawn. Well, that's what it looks like at first. But if you were to go travel back 945 years you'd find yourself in the middle of Castle grounds in the year 1070. Bramber Castle was a Norman motte-and-bailey castle built by the 1st feudal baron William De Braose. There's now hardly anything left of the Castle itself apart from a large section of the main gatehouse and a few bits of wall here and there around the perimeter. The large mound covered in trees in the centre is the original castle motte. It's a lot smaller than it was back in its time but it still rises to 30 ft (10 m). A 'Motte' was a raised earthwork that would have had a wooden or stone keep situated on its summit. The castle is famous for being 'confiscated' during the reign of King John (1199–1216). Bramber Castle is situated in the village of Bramber in West Sussex.

Land & Leagues :- One of my favourite beaches to take photogra[hs just happnes to be the nearest beach to where I live on the South coast of England and a few miles to the East of Brighton with all its famous trappings. More often than not I find I am the only one there so have the place to myself as I pick carefully my way out over the rocks at low tide. For some reason most of the shots and images I take here are looking West towards the coastal city and resort so I thought i'd post this one as it's looking the other way towards the East. It looks like the cliffs stop further ahead but in actual fact they curve around slightly before naturally dipping down at Rottingdean Village and then rise up again as they thunder through Saltdean, Telscombe, Peacehaven and eventually come to a stop at Newhaven where the harbour is. From Newhaven there's a large break in the cliffs for a few miles before they suddenly rise up again out of nowhere at Seaford Head and thunder off once again before dropping at Cuckmere Haven where the estuary is. After Cuckmere the once again come up out of nowhere and form the famous Seven Sisters before hitting Birling Gap and then becoming the famouos Beachy head which is the highest chalk sea cliff in Britain, rising to 162 metres (531 ft) above sea level.

Great Hall :- I love this place. The gardens are immense and seriously well looked after and the remains of the house have got to be seen to be believed. It was once a grand regency style house owned by the Messel family who transformed it in the 1920's into a 'Medieval' Manor House. Then in February 1947 a vast asmoun t of the house was destroyed by a severe fire. It's hard to believe but somehow or other a small section of the house escaped unscathed and the rooms that were left behind were lived in by the last of the Mesels Anne, Countess of Rosse up until her death in 1992. Nymans house and gardens are now owned and looked after by the National Trust and are at Handcross, Haywards Heath in West Sussex.

All Photography Copyright © Justin Hill