- Colchester base - Temple of Claudius, Colchester - Ancient Colchester Castle - Modern Colchester Castle
About 75 AD, the Romans built a temple dedicated to the late Emperor Claudius in what they then called Camulodunum — now known as Colchester. The foundation contained a pair of arches down either side of the middle which they filled with sand. The temple was destroyed in Boudicca's revolt but was rebuilt when the Romans regained control.
About a thousand years later William the Conqueror ordered the building of a castle at Colchester. Rather than building a new foundation they reused that of the ruined Roman temple. It was the largest Norman keep ever built in England. It never really saw military action and within a few centuries it was in use as a gaol (or jail, as we Americans spell it). One of the gaolkeepers was my great^9 grandfather.
In 1685 John Wheely was licensed to pull down the castle and sell it as building materials. He made a start at demolition and then became sidetracked by the belief there was treasure buried underneath. He tunneled into the foundations, discovered the Roman arches, removed the sand, found no treasure, and went bankrupt, sparing the castle any further demolition.
Over the next couple of centuries the castle had various owners some of whom indulged in various projects of restoration and modification, including the building of a dome on what was left of the southwest tower. The Borough of Colchester acquired the castle in the 1920s and it is now a museum.
This model represents the castle as it was originally built. We have no reliable images of the castle prior to Wheely's partial demolition and it is not even certain whether it originally had two, three, or four storeys. The model is based on a couple of modern artists' impressions and a model at the Castle Museum (see photo).
The model is shown on a base in one of the photos; that base is uploaded separately as "Colchester base". The instructions and parts list are for the Castle only.
The Ancient and Modern Colchester Castle models have a lot of parts in common. Having built one you won't need to acquire too many parts to build the other.