Located at the shortest crossing between the UK and continental Europe, Dover Castle played a prime role in England's historical fortunes. Invading from France, William the Conqueror built the first castle in 1066 - an earthwork structure with a motte. Henry II did most to shape the building between 1179 and 1188, adding defences radiating out from the keep to produce Europe's first concentric castle. Henry II’s work was carried out with the help of Maurice the Ingeniator, and was completed by King John, resulting in a four-storey keep, a three-towered forebuilding and impregnable defensive walls.
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