See also Deal Castle.
See also Deal Castle.
Deal castle. which is still standing though remodeled in the 18th century was "one of a lengthy chain of forts built in the early part of the sixteenth century by Henry VIII, to defend England and Wales against invasion from Catholic Europe....The long shingle beach directly in front of Deal castle contributed to the need of the fort as protection against invasion and it also meant that the anchorage between the coast and the sandbar, or Downs, in front of the shore could be defended from the castle"
More of its history and pictures:
Deal to London : 2 day journey; including Gravesend to Temple by Water ( Liza Lizard Restoration London P 71)
The Castles about Deal
"The cut-throat town of Deal", Lucy Hutchinson 1664.
I don't think that the town had a proper harbour in the 1660s, but nevertheless it was an important assembly points for ships because the adjacent hills provided a great deal of protection from gales and tempests, and Pepys records his and other ships doing this on 9 April 1660.
The town grew up around the Castle and also to provide the supplies required by the ever-increasing fleets of ships as the British navy grew in size. But the town had a black reputation in the 17th century as a home for smugglers, and people who deliberately wrecked ships in order to rob them. Daniel Defoe would later write:
"If I had any satire left to write,
Could I with suited spleen indite,
My verse should blast that fatal town,
And drown'd sailors' widows pull it down;
No footsteps of it should appear,
And ships no more cast anchor there.
The barbarous hated name of Deal shou'd die,
Or be a term of infamy;
And till that's done, the town will stand
A just reproach to all the land."
Lucy Hutchinson cursed it as "a cut-throat town" but she did have personal reasons to hate the place. Colonel John Hutchinson who strongly defended Nottingham against the Royalist Forces at the time of the Civil War was imprisoned by Charles II in Sandown Castle at Deal and eventually died there. His wife, Lucy Hutchinson found rooms in Deal to be near to her husband.
Pepys was also dismissive of the place when he visited it on 30 April 1660. He had sailed through it at least once previously (on 9 April) but perhaps not disembarked on that occasion. As the town did not have a harbour, his ship would not have been able to sail directly into port: instead he would have had to transfer to one of the local galleys or small boats to be taken ashore.
Wenceslaus Hollar (Czech/British 1607-1677)
The fleets off Deal; long view printed from two separately bordered plates, the castle to the centre left of the left-hand plate, annotated with letters and corresponding key. Etching ,1640
Chart showing the number of references in each month of the diary’s entries.