Built in 1544, Southsea Castle was part of a series of fortifications constructed by Henry VIII around England’s coasts to protect the country from invaders.
Barely was the work completed when Henry VIII’s flagship, the Mary Rose, tragically sank in front of the Castle. During the English Civil War, nearly a century later, the Castle was captured for the only time in its history, by Parliamentarian forces.
Over the centuries, Southsea Castle’s defences were strengthened so that it could continue to protect Portsmouth. A lighthouse was built in the 1820s, and is still in use by shipping today. In 1960 the Castle left military service. It was acquired by Portsmouth City Council, which restored the Castle to its 19th century appearance.
Southsea Castle, Clarence Esplanade, Southsea PO5 3PA
Telephone: 023 9282 7261
Website: Southsea Castle