Chepstow Things to Do

  • Chepstow Castle
    Chepstow Castle
    by balhannah
  • Chepstow Castle
    Chepstow Castle
    by balhannah
  • Chepstow Castle
    Chepstow Castle
    by balhannah

Most Recent Things to Do in Chepstow

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    Chepstow Castle

    by Myfanwe Written Mar 29, 2010
    Chepstow Castle
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    Building commenced on Chepstow Castle in 1067 as a base for the Norman conquest of South East Wales. The importance of the site is reflected in the fact that it was one of the first stone built castle in England and Wales. The Castle holds a fine vantage point perched up on the cliffs overlooking the River Wye. It was greatly enlarged in the 12th and 13th Century. During our visit in March 2010 we were told a new exhibition would be open in Easter together with a new shop selling all sorts of CADW goodies.

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    Museum

    by Balam Updated Mar 29, 2010

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    Chepstow Museum
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    Situated in a 18th century Town House called Gwy House that has an interesting history in itself involving some prominent people from Chepstow’s past.
    It was built in 1796 by Warren Jane who was an Apothecary and the house continued to be linked to the medical profession as it was owned for many years during the 19th century by a local surgeon and during the First World War it became a Red Cross Hospital and until recently it was the Chepstow and District Hospital, there is a display in the Museum that illustrates the changing uses of the house over its history.

    The museum exhibits reflect Chepstow’s development from its early beginnings as a Roman town to being an important port and bustling Market town as well as the then subsequent decline of the port. The museum houses a wealth of information and is well worth a visit.

    Admission is free

    Open Monday to Saturday 11:00 to 13:00, 14:00 to 17:00
    Sundays 14:00 to 17:00

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    The Port Wall

    by Balam Updated Mar 29, 2010

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    The Port Wall
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    In Medieval times the Town was protected to it's North and East by the River and by it's Town Wall called The Port Wall. The wall was over 1,200 yards long, 6 feet thick and 15 feet high. It originally had 12 towers along the wall and a dry moat on the outside.
    The wall was built mostly just as a means of controlling access to the town which was via the Town Gate were a Toll would be charged on Goods brought into the Town. This sort of wall and gate is known as a Customs Wall.

    Much of the wall is in an excellent state of preservation although we found that the best stretch is that that can be seen from Upper Nelson St at its junction with Garden City way.

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    Chepstow Castle

    by Balam Updated Mar 29, 2010

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    Chepstow Castle
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    With it's spectacular setting on cliffs over the River Wye Chepstow Castles long cliff edge hugging shape shows several stages of development from its early Norman beginnings in 1067, just a year after the norman invasion building commenced and unlike most other Norman fortresses of the time Chepstow Castle was built imediatly from Stone showing it's great importance. At this time most other fortresses were being built in the Motte and Bailey form and constructed of wood with earth ramparts, William Fitzosbern used his great Castle to subdue the Welsh population of Gwent.
    It was lost by Sir William Fitzosbern's son Roger after an unsuccessful rebellion in 1075 becoming property of the King. In the 12th century the castles fortifications were strenghened considerably with building of the 13th century being mostly new living quarters.
    During the 14th centuary the castle changed hands many times as it's importance declined.
    In 1403 the castle was regarrisoned due to the fear of attack by Owain Glyndwr and thus it's strength prevented it from being attacked.

    like many great Castles during the 16th century the living quarters were adapted for more comfortable pastimes and it came to resemble a Great House rather than a Castle but the luxery did not last long as saw military action during the first Civil War when it was held by the Royalists until their surrender in 1645. During the Second Civil War the Castle was once more held for the King but it was besieged by the Parliamentarians whose guns breached the walls and the Castle was taken and its commander Sir Nicholas Kemeys was killed
    The Parliamentarians repaired the castle and held it for the remainder of the Civil War. the After the restoration of the monarchy in 1660 the Castle was used as a prison and held some important people like the Royalist Bishop Jeremy Taylor and the Regicide Henry Marten who was imprissoned in Bigod's Tower (now known as Marten's Tower) where he spent 12 years in comfortable captivity until his death on 9 September 1680 after choking while eating his supper.

    The Castles garrison and it's guns left in 1690 and many of the castles other defences dismantled and Castle was allowed to fall into a state of decay until it was eventually passed over into the care of the State in 1953

    Adult - £3.60, Concession - £3.20, Family - £10.40
    Entry is free for Welsh residents aged 60 and over or 16 and under who have a valid pass.



    Opening times
    01.04.09 - 31.10.09: Monday - Sunday 9.00 - 17.00

    01.11.09 - 31.03.10: Monday - Saturday 9.30 - 16.00, Sunday 11.00 - 16.00

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    St Marys Church

    by Balam Written Mar 5, 2010

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    Henry the 2nd Earl of Worcester and his wife
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    Chepstow Parish and Priory Church of St. Mary was founded by 1071 by the Marcher Lord Sir William Fitzosbern who brought Benedictine monks from the Abbey in Cormeilles Normandy to supervise the building of the church which was built in local yellow Triassic sandstone.
    The Parish and Priory Church prospered until the Act for the Dissolution of Smaller Monasteries in 1536. After this much of the stone from the Priory and the Church's eastern section was taken and used for local building.
    It's central Norman tower collapsed during a severe gale in 1703 leaving only the present fantastic example of a vast three storey early Norman Nave. (It's present fortified tower was erected in 1705). The west door is said to be an architectural masterpiece with five arches resting on receding columns and all decorated in a lavish style of the early Norman period.

    The Church has two early tombs , one is a 16th century monument to Henry the 2nd Earl of Worcester and his wife, The other is a Jacobean tomb of Margaret Cleydon. Her tomb also depict's her two husbands and twelve children.
    In the west porch there is a floorstone with an epitaph that marks the burial place of Henry Marten the regicide, who died in 1680 whilst imprisoned at Chepstow Castle.
    There are two fonts, one of which is of Norman origin and the other dates from the 15th century

    The church is open daily between 9am and 5pm

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    The Town Gate

    by Balam Written Mar 4, 2010

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    The Town Gate
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    Chepstow's original Town Gate was built at the same time as it's Port Wall during the lordship of Sir Roger Bigod. The Gate was rebuilt during the medieval period although the existing gate dates mostly from the start if the 16th Century.
    As with many walled towns Tolls were once collected on all cattle and goods that passed through for sale. These were paid to the Lord and would be used to aid with the upkeep of the towns defences and it was with this money that in 1524 Charles Somerset the lst Earl of Worcester restored the medieval gate.

    The room above the Town Gate has had many uses over the years, it has been a prison, guard room, Quarters for the local constable and a museum among many.
    Following some extensive restoration by the Town Council in 1986 the room was named 'The Margaret Cleyton Room' in memory of the lady who had the Gatehouse rebuilt in 1609.

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  • aaaarrgh's Profile Photo

    Visit England!

    by aaaarrgh Updated Sep 10, 2006

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    border control

    The River Wye divides Wales from England here. Chepstow has a pretty town bridge, built in 1816 to replace the previous wooden version. So a short walk across the bridge will bring you into Tutshill, England. No passport required yet ;-) When my Welsh-speaking friend moved to Chepstow he found he was living on the 'wrong' side of the border, by a few dozen metres, haha.

    On the bridge wall on the Welsh side you can see a plaque marking the height of a verrry high tide in 1883.

    Walk along the English pavement next to the English road, up the English hill on the opposite bank. From the top, you will be able to see Piercefield House, designed by the great English architect Sir John Soane.

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    Chepstow Museum ~ re-live the olden days

    by aaaarrgh Written Sep 5, 2006

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    ty gwy

    Chepstow Museum is directly opposite the Tourist Information Office in a pleasant Georgian mansion. It is FREE to enter, so nothing to lose except half an hour of your time. Well, as for time you can travel back decades, with exhibitions of wartime Chepstow and miscellaneous collections of Chepstow clocks, signs, bank notes, bottles, machinery etc. One large room is devoted to the town's early history, another is filled with 200 years of etchings of Chepstow. On the landing there was information, photos, paintings and drawings of Sir John Soanes' local masterpiece, Piercefield House - I had just missed a special exhibition of the architects' original drawings.

    The museum staff are helpful and friendly and look after a museum shop filled with various postcards, games, books and souvenirs.

    Open 10.30-5.30 during Summer months, closes for lunch in Winter

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    Chepstow's Clifftop Castle

    by aaaarrgh Updated Sep 4, 2006

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    attraction
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    No doubt if you are heading for Chepstow, you will know about its excellent castle. It sits high above a bend in the River Wye on sheer rocky cliffs. Its construction began shortly after the Norman Conquest of England in 1067. There are examples of different historical periods which make the castle a useful learning tool for visitors and students. Thankfully you don't really need to spend money on a guidebook because there is plenty of information on display. And an interesting exhibition about the castle's history and the English Civil War. At the end of the 17th century, a few decades after the war ended, the Castle outlived its usefulness and began to decay.

    Chepstow Castle has a big advantage over similar castles nearby (for example Caerphilly) simply by the fact it is surrounded by beautiful countryside and a picturesque town!

    Admission price in 2006 3.50/3.00 GBP for adults, 10 GBP for a family. Close to large carpark, Tourist Info Centre and Chepstow Museum

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  • neilward's Profile Photo

    Grandstand view.

    by neilward Updated Nov 8, 2004

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    This is the new grandstand at Chepstows racecourse,it provides a great view and superb facilities for all concerned.
    lots of access for the elderly and infirm,very flat for wheelchairs and free for kids.

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    Grandstand view.

    by neilward Written Nov 8, 2004

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    This is the new grandstand at Chepstows racecourse,it provides a great view and superb facilities for all concerned.
    lots of access for the elderly and infirm,very flat for wheelchairs and free for kids.

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    The town of Chepstow

    by sue_stone Written Sep 20, 2004

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    street in Chepstow

    Cheptow is located just over the border from England, in Monmouthshire, South East Wales.

    It is an attractive town situated on a large bend of the River Wye.

    The main attraction in Chepstow is the Castle, though the centre of town is cute and worth a wander around before or after a visit to the Castle.

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    Chepstow Castle

    by sue_stone Written Sep 20, 2004

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    Chepstow Castle
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    Chepstow Castle is an amazing castle that dates back to 1069!!

    It covers a large area with different sections, some in better condition than others.

    It is located in a great position, sitting high up above the River Wye.

    We really enjoyed wandering through the castle, reading the information signs in each section, which helped to give you a feel for castle life.

    The experience was topped off nicely by the sound of a medieval wooden flute being played in one section of the castle, which wafted across the inner courtyard.

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    The Gee Gees.

    by neilward Updated Jan 10, 2004

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    Any visit to Chepstow should be combined with a day at the races,ita an excellent day out.Drinks are a bit expensive,lots of food outletsand parking across the road.Theres a subway for pedestrians,prices range from £11-$17 entrance.

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    The border

    by neilward Written Jan 2, 2004

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    River Wye

    This is the Wye Bridge, that spans the River Wye,which provide a lot of the border between England and Wales.
    Thie picture was taken in the Spring,the colours you can see this time of year are beautiful,lots of greens and browns.

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