Flint Castle was the first of Edward I's Welsh castles and construction started in 1277.
The castle was built on the Dee estuary and its main purpose was to pacify the Welsh. Initial building work finished in 1286 and the moat was filled by seawater, which allowed ships to dock and unload supplies. The castle came under attack from Dafydd ap Gruffudd in 1282 and then Owain Glyndwr in 1400. It subsequently suffered severe damage during the Civil War and has been ruined since that time.
The town of Flint was granted its market in 1278, a year after the defeat of Llewelyn by Edward I. This was in response to the influx of English settlers who brought special rights to hold a weekly market and other privileges. The Great County Court was held in Flint four times during Edward I's reign and Flint has the oldest town charter in Wales, which was granted in 1284.
In 1399 Richard II was handed over to his enemy, Henry Bolingbroke, at Flint Castle and it therefore features in a scene of Shakespeare's Richard II. Flint hosted the National Eisteddfod in 1969 and, as a result, has its own ring of Gorsedd stones. Eighteen per cent of Flint's population (11,936 in 2001) considered themselves Welsh at the last census, although the main spoken language is English.