Warwick (Derivation: OE; dwellings by the weir or river dam), is a town, the administrative centre of Warwickshire England, on the River Avon and Grand Union Canal about 32 km (20 miles) south-east of Birmingham.
Its main claim to fame is the castle, one of the great castles of England that has enjoyed continuous occupation. The site was first fortified by Ethelfleda of Mercia, a daughter of Alfred the Great, as one of the ring of protective “burghs” against the Welsh and Vikings and was a royal borough at the time of the Norman Conquest. It became a standard motte and bailey castle during the Norman - early Angevin eras, then greatly strengthened in the 14th century by the powerful Warwick family, of which Richard Neville, “the kingmaker” is the most famous son.
Whilst Warwick was destroyed by fire in 1694 the castle survived. These days, extensively rebuilt, refurbished, refurnished, restored, renovated and resplendent - with grounds landscaped by Capability Brown in the mid-18th century - it has become one of the most successful commercial tourist destinations in England with reinactments and waxworks and the torture chamber and many other attractions.
These days, the outskirts of Warwick have expanded to be contiguous with Leamington Spa.