By the 16th century, cannon and gunpowder had become the dominant weapon of war and the English King`s main castle in Jersey, Mont Orgueil, was vulnerable.
A new castle, which was out of range of these new weapons had to be bulit and the site chosen was on a small islet in St Aubin's Bay. Sir Walter Raleigh, who was governor of Jersey between 1600 and 1603, named it Elizabeth Castle, after his Queen, Elizabeth I.
At first the fact that the castle was enclosed by the rising tide for seven out of every twelve hours was seen as an advantage. However, this was also its Achilles Heel because soldiers garrisoned there were unable to defend St. Helier when the causeway was covered by the sea.
In 1781 French troops capitalised on this weakness by landing at La Rocque on the south east coast and capturing the town of St. Helier with almost no resistance. After defeating the French forces at The Battle of Jersey it was decided that a new fortification would be built above St. Helier on Mont de la Ville , now known as Fort Regent.
Elizabeth Castle was sold to the Jersey government in 1923 and apart from the period of German occupation during the Second World War its only use has been as a historical monument and more recently as a venue for civic marriages.