Gwrych Castle

East lodge

Date

13 November 2010
Location

Abergele, Conwy

SH 93960 77568; 53.28443°N, 3.59202°W Lodge
SH 92909 77524; 53.28382°N, 3.60778°W Castle
SH 91862 77631; 53.28456°N, 3.62351°W Tower

Further Information

The original 12th-century Norman castle at Gwrych was rebuilt by the Welsh prince Rhys ap Gruffydd later in the century, and was destroyed in the 17th century by the Roundheads during the English Civil War. The current Gothic folly was built from 1819 to 1825 for the Bamford-Hesketh family.

Winifred Bamford-Hesketh, Countess of Dundonald inherited the property in 1894. Upon her death in 1924 she left the castle to King George V and the Prince of Wales. The gift, however, was refused and the property passed to the Venerable Order of Saint John. Winifred’s husband, the Earl of Dundonald bought the castle back in 1928. During the Second World War Gwrych was home to 200 Jewish refugees. The 13th Earl of Dundonald sold the property in 1946 and two years later the castle was opened to the public as ‘The Showplace of Wales’. In the 1970s it served as a venue for medieval banquets, markets and jousting. It finally closed in 1985.

Nick Tavaglione, an American businessman, bought the castle in 1989 with plans for renovation that were never realised. It was later bought by Clayton Hotels in 2007 who intended to convert it into a 5-star hotel. However, the company went into administration and the castle was sold in April 2010 to Edwards Property Management.

Gwrych Castle (Wikipedia); Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust; Rhyl Flats and North Hoyle offshore windfarms


East lodge


East lodge


Gwrych Castle


Gwrych Castle


Gwrych Castle


Gwrych Castle


Gwrych Castle


Gwrych Castle - D for Dundonald


Gwrych Castle


Gwrych Castle


Gwrych Castle


Gwrych Castle


Gwrych Castle


Lady Emily's Tower


Lady Emily's Tower

Lady Emily's Tower


Lady Emily's Tower


Looking East from Lady Emily's Tower


North Hoyle Offshore Windfarm from Lady Emily's Tower


Rhyl Flats Offshore Windfarm from Lady Emily's Tower

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11 thoughts on “Gwrych Castle

    • Totally derelict. It is very interesting. Apparently the site was occupied for a while by New Age travellers. The castle itself was subject to looting and vandalism and all that remains today is the decaying shell of the building.

  1. Notwithstanding its derelict nature (and therefore potentially dangerous) is it possible for the general public (ie. me) to have a wonder round and take a few pics. for the family album? Much as you’ve done for the great shots above?

    • As you are no doubt by now aware, yes you can. I took my touring bike up there yesterday.

      I didn’t enter the actual building (although I suspect it’s possible) but it doesn’t matter at all as you can take a very spectacular route to Emily’s Tower (great views!) before riding (or walking) the ridge back toward the main building, passing another hidden rear tower and offering a great view over the rear of the ‘castle’. It made the ride yesterday.

      As for how legal all this is; there are several ‘Private Property’ signs to pass, but there appears to be an informal right-to-roam attitude in place as long as no-one takes the mick.

      I realise it’s years since you asked the question and you probably know already, but as these comments are searchable it may be of use to someone else.

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  3. Pingback: Dereliction « GeoTopoi

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