The Berkeley (pronounced Bark-lee) family has an long history of intrigue, including their own private dungeon where they killed King Edward II. Their castle is located in Gloucestershire, north of Bristol. The town was also the home of Edward Jenner – who invented the Smallpox vaccine. Definitely worth a visit if you are out west.
The Ghost of King Edward II of Berkeley Castle
Located in Gloucestershire England, Berkeley Castle was built in 1153 by William FitzOsbern after Henry II granted permission to construct a castle of stone.
Over the centuries, Berkeley Castle served an important role in English history with its Earls participating in many famous wars. The castle was damaged after being battered by Lord Oliver Cromwell.
For approximately 850 years, the castle has been inhabited by the Berkeley Family and resides as the oldest inhabited castle in England.
The castle is best known for the royal figure who was imprisoned and murdered there.
As Richard Jones tells the story …
“Visitors to the castle can still see a deep dungeon in the old keep, into which were once thrown the rotting carcasses of animals, accompanied every so often, it is said, by the corpses of common people who had offended the powerful Lord Berkeley. The stench rising from this disease-ridden and malodorous pit must have been unbearable, but it also provided an exquisitely horrific way to punish those of noble birth who had incurred the wrath of the Berkeley family. A windowless cell can be seen close by. Here, unfortunate nobles would be locked away, with only the stinking air from the nearby dungeon to breathe. It provided a convenient method by which to dispose of those who could not be seen to have been murdered, since few people could survive long in the dreadful and fetid atmosphere.