Salutations-It's Berkeley Castle.

The trouble with a place or feature, which is close to where you live is that you  don't visit it too often. Such was the case with Berkeley Castle, which was only about six miles away from Cam near Dursley, where I lived for eleven years.
Indeed, our youngest daughter d. had never visited, she claimed.

So it was to rectify this admission, that last Wednesday ( 29/ 06/ '16 ) we set sail for Berkeley, now twenty four miles away. I remembered that close to the castle was the redoubtable Salutation Inn.
It had earned the title of ' Camra pub of the year 2014 ' and was one establishment I had not visited.


As you can see from the link above it offers real ale and real 'home cooked ' food.
The interior is small in size, with  two rooms, bar and lounge.
Because of this you cannot book a table in advance. We sat in the bar area and enjoyed the 'dish of the day' which was pork chops ( sourced from their own pigs) cooked with cider and mustard- infused potato; topped off with fresh vegetables.

It was a pleasing experience, marred only with the arrival of four dogs, two of which were dispatched to the adjoining lounge. the dogs it must be said, proved no trouble, but the possibility of hairs and food, for my part did not enrich my culinary experience.

The beer was, however immensely quaffable.

And so to that ancient pile, Berkeley Castle., a Grade 1 listed building, which has remained within the Berkeley family, since they reconstructed it in the 12 Century.. The Castle has survived a Royal Progress by Queen Elizabeth 1 where legend has it the royal household  almost ate all the castle's provisions !

More serious  was the capture of the Castle in The Civil War in 1645 by the Parliamentarian  side. After cannon fire the wall were left breached, but the Berkeley family were allowed to retain ownership on condition that they never repaired the damage to the Keep and Outer Bailey.  This is still enforced today by the original Act of Parliament.

In 1974 the Castle was threatened with a boundary change that would see it become part of the new county of Avon and away from Gloucestershire. The 'Great and the Good' soon sorted that nonsense out and it remains a proud part of our counties heritage.

It is worth keeping your admission ticket, because it allows you free admission if you visit again within  a year.

Adjoining the ticket building is a butterfly house, which makes  a very pleasant start to your visit.

There are guided hourly tours should you need them, but I found it very pleasing to wander freely within the prescribed rooms, choosing your route as you did so.

I admired this Stubbs painting in the Gallery.

I admired this grand table and wondered if the present family enjoyed their 
Christmas dinner here.

This shows the yellow hunting coat, born by the still active
Berkeley Hunt, 

The gardens and ground provide an attractive
walk and allow you to see the
Castle in a better prospective.

In the days when there were only three television channels to watch and Ted Heath was sailing in 'Morning Cloud 'I was a member of the Waterly Bottom Mummers. Based in the Dursley area we performed our annual Christmas play in pubs and places.


The above link from an earlier posting will give you an idea of the costumes.

Upon one occasion we were lucky enough to take our play to the Great Hall at Berkeley Castle.

Forty or so years later I tread the boards again. Note the 
Minstrel Gallery above.

A fitting end to a splendid day out.


Says it all really - oh dear oh dear.

Cheerio for now


Popular posts from this blog

Jimmy Uttley: God's Spring Blessing

Pen Friends: French Leave:

Tree-Saw: Willie-Tail: Winter Has Come: Snaps.