Cardiff Castle Facts

Here are some facts about Cardiff Castle.

  • Cardiff Castle is located in the Castle Quarter, in the heart of Cardiff, the capital of Wales. There has been a fort on the site for almost 2,000 years.
  • The current building was built in the late 11th century, replacing a Roman fort. The castle was constructed by the Normans to help their expansion into Wales.

  • During the 19th century, the Marquess of Bute, one of Britain’s richest men, inherited the castle, although he only used it for several months of the year. In 1947 the castle was given to the city.
  • Cardiff Castle is a unique blend of different architectural styles. Although mostly Norman, there are still Roman parts to it, as well as Gothic-Victorian parts, built in the 19th century.
  • Some of the most ornate decoration was by the Victorians. Some of the themes that can be seen include Biblical characters, signs of the Zodiac, the seasons and heraldic motifs.
  • Welsh banquets are popular tourist attraction at Cardiff Castle. They include food, drink and entertainment just as they would have several centuries ago.
  • During Norman times the toilets hung over the castle walls, and all the waste ended up in the moat. The job of the gong farmer was to collect the waste during the night.
  • During World War 2, the castle’s tunnels were used as air raid shelters from German bombs. An exhibition at the castle recreates the shelters.
  • The grounds are home to several peacocks. The grounds have also been used for parades and concerts – Green Day and Tom Jones have performed here.

What next? Discover more castle facts by visiting our castle resources page.