Dunster Castle Visit

Meeting with Volunteer Guide – Bev Woodger 4th November 1994

The following letter was received on the 26th October 1994 in response to enquiries sent out to specific heritage sites for interest in being a test site for my major project.

24th October 1994

Dear Miss Field,

Your enquiry to the Tourist Information Centre at Bristol has been passed to me via the Minehead T.I.C. and the property manager at Dunster Castle for a reply.

The ideal book that you need for this project has not yet been written, but the development of Dunster Castle would provide quite a useful vehicle for a project particularly one involving overlays, since it has been developing over about 1000 years and gradually moving across the site. During this period it has developed from a wooden castle of the Motte and Bailey design on the top of the hill to the present manor house situated in what would have been the outer ward of the Norman Castle. There was visit from Oliver Cromwell’s wreckers inbetween.

The ideal book, although it by no means covers the whole story, is The History of Dunster by Maxwell Lyte. It is now out of print but you should be able to get a copy through the Library loan service.

The Castle closes to visitors next week, but if you would like to pay a visit and walk round with me during the close season, I can arrange that and explain some of the finer points of the development on the ground, and see if there is any photo copiable material that would help. If you have the facility for copying slides onto a cd, then we could also discuss that or some other way of incorporating pictures.

I hope this goes some way towards answering your queries, but I am afraid there isn’t a simple answer or readymade source.

Yours sincerely,

Bev Woodger.
Volunteer Guide.

I rang Bev Woodger in response to his letter on Monday 26th October and we arranged for me to visit on Friday 4th November at 11am.

Bev’s response was one of a few but the only one that encouraged progression of the project idea. I was very pleased as Dunster has changed so much, not just in the architectural space but also the environment i.e. from bleak moorland to a densely wooded tor.

This letter was the start of what was to become The Talking Walls.


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