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The castle is of a basic rectangular design with great drum towers at each corner but due to its magnificent setting and the peaceful reflections created in the waters of the moat, it has a romanticised appeal that has led to its reproduction on everything from book covers to jigsaw puzzles.
Despite the expansive moat, a long wooden access bridge and apparently impressive fortifications, the castle was incapable of being defended against heavy canon fire as the walls were too thin. It was in 1483 that it fell to a siege by Richard III, although it is commonly believed that no siege took place and the then owner Sir Thomas Lewknor probably surrendered without a fight.
In 1644 during the English Civil War the Parliamentarians were ordered to dismantle the castle and it remained a ruin until partially restored by Cubitt in the late 19th century and finally purchased and restored to its present condition by Lord Curzon in 1917, the castle passed to the National Trust on his death in 1925.
What remains of the interior of Bodiam shows that its lodgings were comfortable and well appointed, the internal buildings being constructed against the outer walls so as to leave a spacious central courtyard. There are sufficient remains to give a good indication of the original layout. Access to the upper level of the tower and ramparts is still available via two intact tower stairways, affording excellent views down into the castle courtyard and of the surrounding landscape.
Bodiam is located near Robertsbridge in East Sussex off the A229.