So, lie thou there;
For underneath an alehouse’ paltry sign,
The Castle in St Alban’s, Somerset
Hath made the wizard famous in his death.
“That’s me Shakespeare was talking about – The Castle Inn! Little old me, immortalised by the great playwright in Henry VI part 2. The only building in St. Albans that he name checks. I’m so proud.
But then, I was at the centre of momentous events that changed the course of Medieval English history. You see, the Dukes of York and Somerset had been squabbling for some time and it all boiled over into violence in 1455 when the so-called Wars of the Roses broke out in St Albans.
There was hand-to-hand fighting in the streets – absolute mayhem – and the Duke of Somerset found himself cornered within my walls. Well, the Duke of York really had it in for him so it was curtains for Somerset, I’m afraid. Some say there was a prophesy that he would die in a castle, leading to a lifelong aversion to the things. Who knows if that’s true though?
Despite my pivotal role in all this, do you know that no one can remember exactly where I stood? Which side of Victoria Street was I? Such is fame, eh? Oh well, thanks for stopping by and remembering me.”
Click here to read the research from our Volunteers
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