It came as no surprise that a castle this old contains a dungeon…
It’s deep in the base of one of the round towers and consists of a circular chamber that is approximately 3 times as tall as it is wide. Entry,centuries ago (our volunteer guide tells us) was via a trapdoor in the ceiling.
There is a small recess in one part of the wall but other than that, no other means of exit or entry, no light and probably no furniture of any sort.
We are told that prisoners thrown down here invariably sustained injuries from the fall, and life expectancy after incarceration was short.
In recent decades when the castle was restored, a small doorway was made to give the visiting public access to the dungeon, but there is still a short, steep wooden set of stairs to negotiate if you actually want to step down inside.
Confined spaces don’t bother me too much but I’m not great with heights so I didn’t brave these stairs but the rest of Family Kiwidutch did and they said it was ok to look at for a few minutes but it wasn’t in any way welcoming and they dreaded the idea of being locked up here in the dark.
Our guide took questions from people doing the tour with us and one of the questions asked was “ why not just dig your way out, at least try and escape?!“
Our guide replied: … “first you would have been in good enough physical state to dig though stone with your bare hands and second, the walls here are 7 meters thick!“
My measurement converter tells me that 7m = 22.97 feet.
No-one mentions this kind of thing in fairy tale castles… and the dark side of the way human beings have treated their enemies is as old as mankind itself.