Pendennis Castle was constructed around 1540 when the threat from the Spanish was of great concern to Henry VIII. He reinforced the whole of the South coast and in addition to Pendennis, he built St. Mawes castle to flank the mouth of the River Fal.
During the reign of Elizabeth I the castle underwent improvements including the addition of an outer wall and bastions. This was designed to counter the growing threat from the Spanish but Pendennis never actually saw action against the Spanish. In fact it wasn’t until the English Civil war that the castle got its first taste of warfare when under the command of Sir John Arundel and Sir Henry Killigrew Pendennis held off Cromwell’s Roundheads for six months before becoming the second to last Castle to surrender.
The castle was later fitted with anti aircraft guns etc for the two world wars as its strategic position at the mouth of the FAL was ideal as part of the coastal defence.
These days the Castle is open to the public all year round, you can explore the grounds and enter the keep where there are displays and talks given.
Prices* are £4.20 for adults and £2.10 for children with family tickets available for around £10.50 English Heritage Member get in FREE. The Castles opening times are as follows.
1 Apr – 30 Sep 2003: 10am – 6pm
1 – 31 Oct 2003: 10am – 5pm
1 Nov 2003 – 31 Mar 2004: 10am – 4pm
24 – 26 Dec 2003 & 1 Jan 2004: Closed
*Prices and opening times correct at time of writing please confirm before arrival.