The Constable’s Gate was built to replace the northern gateway, breached in the French siege of 1216 and blocked in the subsequent strengthening of the defences. It was built between 1221 and 1227 and is one of the most elaborate castle gateways in the country.It consists of five conjoined towers, designed to thrust well forward of the curtain wall and provide maximum flanking fire over the widest possible area. The whole complex structure is bound together at the rear to provide a hall and chambers for the Constable of the castle and his household, and adequate guardrooms and fighting platforms for its military working. The entrance passage itself was defended by a portcullis, the grooves of which remain, and a drawbridge. While the actual outer entrance has been altered, the tall piers of a mediaeval bridge leading up to it still stand. The approach to the gate ran parallel to the curtain wall so any enemy approaching would be subject to fire from the Castle’s defenders.From the time it was built until the present day the Constable’s Gate at Dover has been the residence of the Constable of the Castle, or (as now) his or her Deputy. The fact that it is an official residence has preserved in the past it from the worst of the cutting down and mutilation that has befallen so many of Dover’s towers. As a residence too there have been changes to make the interior less spartan for its inhabitants. In 1882 the back of the gate, within the Castle, was heavily restored. The brick arched structures joining the central tower to the flanking towers to the north and south are comparatively modern insertions, as are the Georgian windows and the balcony.