Unwanted guests have plagued home owners for centuries. What we need today is a modern version of the meurtrière or murder hole.
Accessible from an alcove off the chapel it allowed the inhabitants to pour boiling oil on any unwanted guests as they climbed the stairs. A very effective deterrent.
Today Small Boy, Grandad and I went off to explore Castle Rising.
Castle Rising is a Norman Castle built in the 12th Century on the fens of Norfolk. These days gentle rolling hills surround the ruins, but when it was built, it was raised above the watery fens and nigh impregnable.
The Castle is most famous for being the favoured residence of Queen Isabella who concocted the plot to kill her homosexual husband, King Edward II, with her lover. She spent the rest of her life within its walls and surrounds with her beloved falcons.
Sadly, the resident ghost hunter was not in residence today, but we walked where knights and ladies once trod with a portable tour guide. Even today the castle is an awesome sight, towering above the village below.
I managed to dissuade him from a suit of armour and two full-scale wooden medieval swords in the gift shop, but we returned home with a miniature knight in shining armour.
The afternoon was spent educating the Small Boy on the pursuits of the country gentlemen with his first lesson in skeet shooting.
Small Boy returned home with glowing cheeks, a packet of skeet he wishes to return home with and a box of cartridges symbolising his successful shots.
The April showers have just abated and the sun is shining happily through the blossoms. I find myself longing to make this watery isle home again.
There are a lot of pubs on sale and I am married to the previous manager of a dinner theatre after all.