In the last years of his reign Henry VIII needed a radically modern system of defense to protect England and its newly Protestant Church. Anticipating a foreign onslaught from Catholic Europe after his split from Rome, Henry energetically began the construction of more than 20 stone forts to protect England's major ports and estuaries, whilst modernizing existing fortresses from Hull to Milford Haven. The majority of this was paid for with his new-found fortune plundered from the monasteries, allowing Henry to employ a strong workforce well supplied with materials.
Aided by excellent full-color illustrations and a range of photographs and diagrams, Peter Harrington explores the departure from artillery-vulnerable medieval castle designs to the low, sturdy stone fortresses inspired by European ideas. He explains the scientific care taken to select sites for these castles, and the transition from medieval to modern in this final surge of English castle construction. With many of these fortifications still standing today, this is an ideal book for fortification enthusiasts and tourists alike.
"Perhaps because the extant remains and the written documentation for these castles are more extensive, this book does not emphasize archeology, instead concentrating on the narrative story. The book is so well writeen that the result is one of the most enjoyable books in this series. I unreservedly recommend this book to anyone." -Bolling Smith, The Coast Defense Journal (November 2007)
"This book follows the standard organization used with most of the Fortress series, and that includes a list of these forts that can still be visited. The author, who did an earlier book in the series, also did a fine job on this one... Those interested in following how the castle evolved into the more post-medieval fort will certainly find this a book worth having." -Joe Kauffman, SITEO Newsletter (October 2007)
"It is a superb book on the subject and one that I can recommend to you without reservation." -Scott Van Aken, modelingmadness.com (September 2007)