Gwrych Castle is a historic castle located in Abergele, Conwy County Borough, Wales. It is a Grade I listed building and a prominent landmark in the region. The castle is situated on a hilltop, offering panoramic views of the surrounding countryside and the Irish Sea.
Construction of Gwrych Castle began in 1812 under the direction of Lloyd Hesketh Bamford-Hesketh, the High Sheriff of Denbighshire. The castle was designed by the architect Charles Hesketh in the Gothic Revival style, reflecting the romanticism and fascination with medieval architecture that was popular in the 19th century.
The castle’s architecture is characterized by its imposing towers, crenellated battlements, and intricate stone carvings. It features a mix of architectural elements, including Norman, Tudor, and Gothic styles, which lend it a unique and picturesque appearance.
Throughout its history, Gwrych Castle has had a varied and sometimes turbulent past. It changed hands several times and was used for various purposes, including a private residence, a training camp for the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force during World War II, and a venue for medieval reenactments and events.
In recent years, Gwrych Castle gained renewed attention through its association with the reality TV show “I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!” In 2020, due to travel restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the show was filmed in the castle grounds, bringing international attention to its grandeur and historical significance.
The Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust, a charitable organization, is dedicated to preserving and restoring the castle. Their efforts aim to revitalize the castle as a heritage and cultural center, offering educational programs, events, and access to the public. The restoration work involves repairing and conserving the castle’s deteriorated structures while respecting its historical integrity.
Gwrych Castle is a captivating destination for history enthusiasts, architecture admirers, and those seeking to explore the beautiful Welsh countryside. Its unique charm, scenic location, and ongoing restoration efforts make it a significant landmark and cultural asset in Wales.
On 9th August 2020, it was announced that Gwrych Castle would be the setting for the 2020 series of “I’m a Celebrity – Get Me Out Of Here” (The 20th Anniversary Series). Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the usual base in Australia would be replaced with Wales. The trials are due to be based on the Medieval period with the winner crowned King or Queen of the Castle. Oh, and the castle is reputed to be Haunted!
The series premiered on Sunday 15th November 2020.
Gwrych Castle was purchased in June 2018 by Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust in order to restore and open the historic buildings and estate to the public.
Guided tours are available, visit their website for details.
Gwrych Castle, Llanddulas Road, Abergele, Conwy. LL22 8ET
CLOSED UNTIL THE NEW YEAR 2021.