Under Siege

07/06/2023 - 01/12/2023

Colchester Castle

Included in admission

Suitable for Everyone

Exhibition, History

About this Event

Under Siege is a temporary display to mark the 375th anniversary of the epic Siege of Colchester.

The siege took place over eleven weeks in 1648, during the English Civil War. The Royalists, who supported King Charles I, had taken control of Colchester, but the town was besieged by the parliamentary forces led by Thomas Fairfax. 

This display will feature a range of objects from the period, including coins that were fashioned and used during the siege when money couldn’t circulate, a spade that could have been used to dig the parliamentary defences, and several pamphlets on loan from the Essex Society for Archaeology and History. One of the highlights will be a letter written by Thomas Fairfax himself, displayed for the first time. The letter provides a fascinating insight into the mind of the parliamentary leader during this turbulent period of English history. 

Visit our Siege of Colchester page to discover even more about the siege. It includes instalments from a special video diary, created with reenactor Martin Lovell from the English Civil War Society and students from Colchester Institute.

For useful information, such as how to find us and what facilities Colchester Castle has, we recommend reading our Access information: Access at the Castle


This event is included as part of Castle admission.

How to Book

No need to book, simply drop in.

What's On


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Exhibitions + Displays

Our displays showcase the variety of the collections from art to archaeology, costume to clocks.