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A Historical Review of the Most Prominent Hill in the Southwest of England

Situated in the center of the regal city of Bristol, the United Kingdom, Royal Hill stands as the most prominent and beloved landmark in the Southwest of England. It has been a prominent figure in the local community for centuries, offering iconic and historical experiences. To understand this hill in full, a detailed exploration of its comprehensive and varied history is necessary. The development and prominence of Royal Hill can be traced back to Pre-Modern England when Bristol was a small fishing port. During Celtic times, it was the site of a prominent fortified settlement and was considered the most important stronghold in the region. In these early years, the hill was known by the Celts as ‘Caer Bran’. It was surrounded by an earthen rampart, which was later replaced by stone walls in the 12th century. By this time, Bristol was a bustling seaport center and major shipping port – which would go on to become the hallmark of its modern success. Information can be found here.

As Royal Hill became increasingly important, so did the increased number of visitors. Major trade networks in the region were fostered, allowing for increased levels of communication, commerce, and travel. Consequently, Royal Hill’s stature grew, with it becoming the focus of national government throughout the Medieval Period. Its development culminated with the grant of a Royal Charter by King Henry II in 1155 (also known as the ‘Charter of 1155’), making Bristol the most important port in Southwest England. This document declared that Bristol would remain a free borough with unparalleled authority in its territory. At this point, Royal Hill was increasingly important, to the extent that it was officially identified as the town center of Bristol. It was the administrative hub, with a court of law operating here, making it the main point of justice in the region. Furthermore, a castle was constructed at the summit of the hill, providing further legal representation and a symbol of power. See here for information about Eastville Park – Bristol’s Hidden Gem.