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Built originally during the reign of Henry VIII to protect the entrance to Salcombe harbour, the castle saw action during the English Civil War. Renamed Fort Charles and restored and garrisonned by Sir Edmund Fortescue in 1644 for the royalist cause, it withstood a seige for 4 months against a Parliamentary force in 1646 before surrending on favourable terms. The castle itself was 'slighted' and little remains of the original fortifications especially on the seaward side.