Moorland Keep




Moorland Keep is a fantasy castle built by an imaginary knight Sir Roger de Broyce in 1174 on the southern coast of Wales. Sir Roger was one of the early Marcher Lords of the area. The castle is also reminiscent of the late 11th century “naked” tower castle featured in the movie, “The War Lord,” staring Charlton Heston, screenplay by John Collier and Millard Kaufman, produced by Walter Seltzer, and directed by Franklin Schaffner. The castle was the property of Duke William of Gant, placed along the southern coast of Normandy to guard against Friesian raiders. The castellan was the knight Sir Chrisigon de la Croux.

The keep is a single massive tower with four floors. The upper floor is exposed to the outside and surrounded by battlements. The keep is entered on the lower floor by means of a drawbridge from the barbican. A storage room and dungeon are located below the lower floor. The only access to this room is by means of a trap door in the floor above and a wooden ladder.

The keep is constructed from individual sections cut from ¾” pine or fir stock so that the arrow loops and stairs can be easily installed. These sections are cut at angles to create a circular tower, and require a table saw for cutting. The arrow slits are cut completely through each section so that they fit between sections with a wide opening to the inside and a very narrow opening to the outside. Slots for the floors (wide slots) and stairs (narrow slots) are cut only ¼” into each section. It is suggested that each section be numbered for easy assembly after the sections have been cut. Sections 4, 5, and 6 are incomplete at the door opening and that sections 3 and 7 have holes drilled for the drawbridge bar.

Page five of the instructions illustrates the manner in which the floor, drawbridge and stairs are to be cut. One of the four floor pieces is to be left solid with no stairway opening cut in it. This is to be the main floor of the castle. If you wish to add an additional touch of realism, a trap door can be created in this floor to provide access to the storage room and dungeon below. One can also construct a ladder to place in the dungeon.
A 1/16” hole is to be drilled through the drawbridge at one end and a small brass bar 3” long can be slid through the hole. The drawbridge can then hinge around the pin.