Château de Montfort-sur-Risle

Montfort-sur-Risle, France

Château de Montfort-sur-Risle was built in 1035 by Count Hugues I. It was destroyed already in 1204 during the siege by John, King of England. Since them it has lied in ruins.



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Founded: 1035
Category: Ruins in France
Historical period: Birth of Capetian dynasty (France)

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4.1/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

jean-philippe larger (9 months ago)
A castle ... Finally some castle ruins! I expected something else given the number of signs and advertisements made on this place ... Even if the development is very well done and the place well maintained, the beautiful view of the city, there is really not much to see ... And in addition the little that remains is seen from afar, because too much forbidden, and the chaotic course ... Too bad ...
Catherine De Oliveira (17 months ago)
Très joli site même s'il ne reste plus grand chose du château, la ballade est très agréable, sur le chemin de St Jacques de Compostelle. Le site est bien aménagé avec des tables de pique nique à plusieurs endroits. Un lieu pour passer un très agréable moment en famille. Nous sommes arrivés par le chemin derrière l'église et avons savouré la grimpette ainsi que la vue imprenable sur Montfort. En repartant ne pas hésiter à visiter l'église avec ses magnifiques statues et la légende de Notre Dame de Montfort.
stanzebla (19 months ago)
In 2010 I was there for the first time. They had cute goats, that took care of the vegetation on the place. Didn't see them on my next visits. There's an awesome view over the Risle valley. In 2020 they reopened the inner part of the castle. They seem to have worked on the stability of the ruins.
andre Fleury (19 months ago)
Soothing and rejuvenating place. Very nice events organized several times a year. Well done !
Elodie Merluzzi (2 years ago)
We parked next to the church and we climbed more than 200 steps with a stroller to discover its beautiful ruins with a nice panorama. Finally at the end of the tour of the castle we discovered that we could access it by road. There is a lack of information panel at the edge of the church to give us the choice to see the castle. Despite everything it is very interesting to see, to discover if we are passing through.
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The Broch of Gurness is an Iron Age broch village. Settlement here began sometime between 500 and 200 BC. At the centre of the settlement is a stone tower or broch, which once probably reached a height of around 10 metres. Its interior is divided into sections by upright slabs. The tower features two skins of drystone walls, with stone-floored galleries in between. These are accessed by steps. Stone ledges suggest that there was once an upper storey with a timber floor. The roof would have been thatched, surrounded by a wall walk linked by stairs to the ground floor. The broch features two hearths and a subterranean stone cistern with steps leading down into it. It is thought to have some religious significance, relating to an Iron Age cult of the underground.

The remains of the central tower are up to 3.6 metres high, and the stone walls are up to 4.1 metres thick. The tower was likely inhabited by the principal family or clan of the area but also served as a last resort for the village in case of an attack.

The broch continued to be inhabited while it began to collapse and the original structures were altered. The cistern was filled in and the interior was repartitioned. The ruin visible today reflects this secondary phase of the broch's use.

The site is surrounded by three ditches cut out of the rock with stone ramparts, encircling an area of around 45 metres diameter. The remains of numerous small stone dwellings with small yards and sheds can be found between the inner ditch and the tower. These were built after the tower, but were a part of the settlement's initial conception. A 'main street' connects the outer entrance to the broch. The settlement is the best-preserved of all broch villages.

Pieces of a Roman amphora dating to before 60 AD were found here, lending weight to the record that a 'King of Orkney' submitted to Emperor Claudius at Colchester in 43 AD.

At some point after 100 AD the broch was abandoned and the ditches filled in. It is thought that settlement at the broch continued into the 5th century AD, the period known as Pictish times. By that time the broch was not used anymore and some of its stones were reused to build smaller dwellings on top of the earlier buildings. Until about the 8th century, the site was just a single farmstead.

In the 9th century, a Norse woman was buried at the site in a stone-lined grave with two bronze brooches and a sickle and knife made from iron. Other finds suggest that Norse men were buried here too.