Description: The Welsh border was a treacherous place to be in the early medieval period. In 1292 licence to fortify the hall at Stokesay, turning it into a castle, was granted. The moat was deepened and flooded with water and a high curtain wall was built around the courtyard. A strong defensive tower was constructed with store-rooms below. Windows were reduced to small lancets or slits, and the battlements at the top of the tower were crenallated allowing crossbowmen to shelter behind the merlons (the solid part of the wall) and shoot through the centre or the slits. (Illustration by Sheila Sancha).