Grosmont Castle is one of the ‘Three Castles of Gwent’ located in the village of Grosmont on the northern edge of Monmounthshire. The original earth-and-timber fortification dates back to the Norman conquest of England in 1066 and it is believed to have been built to protect the trading and travel routes from Wales to Hereford. Following a Welsh revolt in 1135, King Stephen combined the forces of three castles – Grosmont, Skenfrith and White Castle – to form a lordship known as the ‘Three Castles’. After being given the castle by King John in 1201, Hubert de Burgh rebuilt the castle in stone. In 1267, Edmund, the Earl of Lancaster, took possession of the castle and it remained owned by the earldom and the later duchy of Lancaster until 1825. After falling into ruin over several decades, the state assumed ownership in 1922 and is now managed by Cadw, the Welsh heritage agency. Although restoration has been limited, there is plenty to see, photograph and enjoy. There are some wonderful towers and, standing proud in the centre of the castle, is a wonderful chimney. You can visit all Three Castles in a single day and there are plenty of places to enjoy lunch or afternoon tea.