Why Hitler saved Windsor Castle – and other facts about the attraction

In March 2022, it was announced that the Queen would be moving permanently to Windsor Castle, having been based there since the pandemic began in 2020.

While Buckingham Palace will remain the monarchy’s central headquarters, it is expected that it will carry out its obligations from the palace. The Queen’s current main residence remains open to the public, which can be visited all year round.

Here are 10 things you might not know about Windsor Castle, from the deceased royals said to haunt the hallways to the occasions the Queen appears to have slept in the dungeons, and what this Platinum Jubilee year is all about has to offer.

It is the oldest (and largest) inhabited castle in the world

The Berkshire Residence is the oldest inhabited castle in the world and has been the family home of British kings and queens for almost 1,000 years. High above the Thames and just outside London, William the Conqueror first explored the site in 1070, and the original structure took 16 years to construct. From the Tudors to Queen Victoria, royals have retreated to the palace at every opportunity and adapted it to their purposes – during the reign of Elizabeth I a long gallery was added to give the Queen a place to stroll in inclement weather.

It is also the largest inhabited castle in the world with over 1,000 rooms and grounds covering 13 hectares. The gilded St. George’s Hall is the largest room and can seat up to 162 for a state banquet.

During the English Civil War it served as a prison

It wasn’t all unbridled luxury in the palace – a few unlucky ones were actually imprisoned within its walls. During the English Civil War it served as Oliver Cromwell’s headquarters and as a prison for captured Royalist officers. However, normal operations resumed when the monarchy was restored when Charles II ordered an extravagant refurbishment of the state apartments, making them the most opulent in England.

It houses the oldest working kitchen in the country

The castle’s Great Kitchen, which has been in continuous use for 750 years and has served 32 monarchs, is the oldest working kitchen in the country – not that it shows any signs of its age. It’s a tightly managed ship with 33 kitchen staff, 20 cooks, three pastry chefs and 10 porters, and the clocks are advanced five minutes to ensure the Queen’s meal is never late. Since major events such as royal weddings are often held here, around 18,000 bottles of wine are stored in the cellar and the whisk can hold up to 250 eggs. At Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding reception, Scottish langoustines and slow-roasted Windsor pork belly were among the delicacies served to the 600 guests.

Guided tours of the kitchen are occasionally offered but must be purchased separately from main entrance tickets ( Why Hitler saved Windsor Castle – and other facts about the attraction

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