The West View of Cowes Castle in the Isle of Wight
View of West Cowes Castle on the Northern coast of the Isle of Wight. Henry VIII built two castle in Cowes in the 16th century, one on each side of the River Medina. The East Cowes castle was smaller and had been abandoned by 1600. West Cowes Castle is described by W. H. Davenport in his ‘Handbook to the Isle of Wight’, published in 1862;
"West Cowes Castle was one of the circular forts built by Henry VIII., about 1538-9, for the defence of the southern coast. During the Commonwealth and Protectorate, it was much used as a prison… In 1781 its military establishment only consisted of a captain, paid 10s per diem, a master gunner, and five other gunners; the garrison here, and the town, however, amounting to 668 men”.