The 1502 Progress: Raglan Castle, Monmouthshire
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The 1502 Progress: Raglan Castle, Monmouthshire

Raglan Castle: Arrival and Family Ties

When Elizabeth and Henry left Troy after five days of hospitality, they had only a short seven-mile journey in a south-westerley direction to reach their next destination, Raglan Castle (or ‘Ragland’ as it was known until at least the early nineteenth century). 

An 1801 account of the road from Monmouth to Raglan describes the scenery the royal couple would have encountered as they began their journey, ‘On leaving Monmouth the road leads for near two miles thro’ a pleasant enclosed valley, skirted by gentle swellings, clothed or cultivated to their summits but gaining the higher ground at Wonastow. The view unfolds itself in a beautiful and extensive manner, over a rich and fertile country…’

The royal party arrived at Raglan Castle on or around 19 August. Their stay there was the apex and, in many ways, the centrepiece of the visit with its incumbent lord, the King’s loyal and erstwhile brother-in-arms, Sir Walter Herbert, playing host…

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A Tudor Weekend in Monmouthshire
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A Tudor Weekend in Monmouthshire

Monmouthshire in South East Wales is a delightful area to visit. Two locations included in this itinerary are in the Wye Valley, just inside the Welsh border, in an area considered to be of outstanding natural beauty.

This two-day interary will take you to visit two fabulous castles and a ruined abbey. Chepstow Castle has deep roots in early medieval history, while Raglan was created as luxurious a palace-fortress during the fifteenth century by the powerful Herbert family. It’s connections to Henry VII make it a must-see location for anyone interested in early Tudor history. Finally, you can drive or walk to the idyllic Tintern Abbey, renowned for the beauty of its location, adjacent to the River Wye.

So, let us go exploring three wonderful Welsh locations…

The 1502 Progress of Henry VII & Elizabeth of York
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The 1502 Progress of Henry VII & Elizabeth of York

Welcome to the 1502 progress!
For this journey, we are principally following in the footsteps of Elizabeth of York during the 1502 summer progress. It would be Elizabeth’s last summer on Earth. She would die shortly after giving birth to a baby girl the following February.
The progress comes on the back of several deeply personal losses for Elizabeth and Henry VII, including the death of Prince Arthur just three months earlier.
Thus, we see an unusual progress and one the looks rather more like a trip down memory lane than the usual state affair, as the King and queen grapple with their grief.
IN this progress we will be heading from Woodstock in Oxfordshire to Raglan Castle and back again. ready to join me on progress?