Rather than rattle on regarding the history of the castle in this post I felt a link to the Wiki page for this would be far better as it explains in far more detail than I could as to why so much is having to be spent on restoration due to fires and dereliction- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Highcliffe_Castle
Restoration has been taking place for many years with many millions of pounds so far spent. It is having to be done in stages as money becomes available via grants, charity money and income from the castle itself.
The exterior, and much of the interior, has already been beautifully restored but there is still many years and many millions of pounds needed to finish off.
Today we toured the next phase of the building work which is to commence some time in the next two years.
Highcliffe was originally a small Hamlet called "Slop Pond" - During the Victorian era Slop Pond became a tourist area and was renamed "Newtown" - It changed it's name again to Highcliff after the first house built on the high cliff, and then soon became known as Highcliffe-on-Sea. - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Highcliffe
Another interesting fact is that Wisconin born Harry Gordon Selfridge, founder of the famous Selfridge store, rented the castle with his Wife, Mother and Son from 1916 to 1922 - Although he died in Putney, London, in 1947 he asked to be buried next to his Wife and Mother in Highcliffe's St Marks Churchyard which is a few steps up and opposite the Castle.
Below are a small handful of some of the photos we took. Unfortunately we were all so engrossed in the tour that we didn't think to start taking photos until almost the end. Click images to enlarge.