Tuesday, July 17, 2007
Hurst Castle is situated at the seaward end of the shingle spit that extends 1½ mile from Milford-On-Sea. The end of the spit, only ¾ of a mile from the Isle of Wight, and there are good views from the top of the original castle You can either walk out along the spit or you can take a little ferry from Keyhaven to reach the castle.
Hurst Castle was the perfect location to defend the western approach to the Solent.
The castle was built by Henry VIII as one of a chain of coastal fortresses and was completed in 1544.
Charles I was imprisoned here in 1648 before being taken to London to his trial and execution.
The castle was modernised during the Napoleonic wars and again in the 1870’s when the enormous armoured wings were constructed. Two of the huge 38-ton guns installed in the 1870’s can be viewed in their casemates.
During World War II, Hurst was manned with coastal gun batteries and searchlights.