Standing on the crest of a hill overlooking the town of Farnham are the impressive motte and 'shell keep' of a castle founded in 1138 by Henry of Blois, Bishop of Winchester and brother of King Stephen. In medieval times the diocese of Winchester was the richest in England, and Farnham was a favourite residence of the bishops. The castle was rebuilt in the late 12th and early 13th centuries, but a viewing platform reveals the buried remains of an earlier tower.
Managed by Farnham Castle. Other parts of the castle are privately owned.
Before You Go
Opening Times: Open 9am-5pm Monday to Friday, 10am-4pm Saturday-Sunday and Bank Holidays. Closed between 25 December and 31 January. Last admission 30 minutes before closing. See details.
Access: The keep is accessible by steep flights of uneven steps.
Parking: There is limited free parking for cars 10 metres from the entrance.
Facilities: There are toilets at the castle.
Other Information: Tours of the Bishop's Palace are available on Wednesday afternoons for an additional fee. Call Farnham Castle on 01252 721194
Dogs: Assistance dogs only.
Plan a Great Day Out
Farnham town centre is a 3/4 mile walk downhill from the castle, and has a range of shops, facilities and places to eat and drink.
Just a couple of miles away from Farnham stand the remains of Waverley Abbey, the site of the first Cistercian abbey in England.
English Heritage cares for over 400 historic buildings, monuments and places - from world-famous prehistoric sites to grand medieval castles, from Roman forts on the edges of empire to a Cold War bunker. Through these, we bring the story of England to life for over 10 million people each year. The English Heritage Trust is a charity, no. 1140351, and a company, no. 0744722, registered in England.
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