Rowland's Castle

Rowland's Castle (or Rowlands Castle; the apostrophe is sometimes disputed) is a village in the East Hampshire district of Hampshire, England. It is 4.7 miles (2.9km) north of Havant, on the Hampshire/West Sussex border.

The village lies in the area of the former Forest of Bere on the eastern boundary of Hampshire. To the east in the parish of Stoughton, West Sussex is Stansted Park.

The village

It is largely a quiet residential village, with four pubs and a few small shops, including a hardware store and local convenience store. The village takes its name from a Motte-and-bailey castle, the remains of which are situated to the south of Redhill Road and west of the railway line, east of the current centre of the village.

Former Van Morrison guitarist Herbie Armstrong operates The Fountain Inn in the centre of the village next to the Village Green. His weekly live music evenings attract music lovers from across the region, and have been known to include some famous faces; Mick Hucknall on one occasion.

In 1994 Stage 5 of the Tour de France (that stage taking place in south east England), passed through Rowland's Castle, attracting large crowds during one of the busiest days in the village's history.

Transport links

Rowland's Castle is served by a railway station on the Portsmouth Direct Line to London Waterloo or Portsmouth. There is just one bus route. It is route 27 which is operated by Emsworth and District.

The village is crossed by three long-distance footpaths, the Monarch's Way, Sussex Border Path and Staunton Way.


The Romans made pottery, brick and tiles at Rowland's Castle because suitable clay was available. A castle was built at some time between 1066 and 1199 and is first documented under the name ROLOKECASTEL in 1381.[1] It was in good repair in the twelfth century, when Henry II spent several days there in hunting and amusement, but was abandoned by the 15th century. The site was damaged by the railway and quarrying in the 19th century and now only the earthworks and a few small areas of wall remain.


Rowland's Castle lies on the northern edge of the Neogene deposits of the Hampshire Basin. The north of the village lies on the chalk of the southern South Downs. In the south is the Reading Formation which gave rise to the former local brick industry.[2]


  1. ^ Hanks, P. Hodges F., Mills, A.D. & Room A. (2002), The Oxford Names Companion, Oxford: Oxford University Press, ISBN 0-19-860561-7
  2. ^ British Geological Survey (1998), England and Wales Sheet 316 Fareham, 1:50,000 series geological map, Keyworth, Nottingham: British Geological Survey, ISBN 0-7518-3168-9

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