Ardgillan Castle in

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Ardgillan Castle is a large country house in Balbriggan, Fingal in Ireland. It is set in the 200 acre Ardgillan Demesne.

Featuring castellated embellishments, the building overlooks Barnageera Beach, the Irish Sea and Skerries. The castle consists of two storeys over a basement, which extends under the south lawns. When occupied, the ground and first floors were the living accommodation while the west and east wings were servants quarters and estate offices. The basement was the service floor, the kitchen and stores. The castle has now been restored and the ground floor rooms and kitchens are open to visitors for guided tours. Tea-rooms are located off the main reception area and serving light snacks are open in conjunction with the Castle opening times. Upstairs, the former bedrooms are used for classes and exhibitions including a permanent and unique exhibition of the "Down Survey" colour maps and text. Rooms are also available form small group meetings and workshops.

Ardgillan Demesne is a popular local park, with a mix of woodlands and large grass open spaces. The park contains a walled herb garden, rose garden, Victorian conservatory, tea rooms and an ice house. A children's playground was added in 2006. Ardgillan Castle provides guided tours and hosts exhibitions throughout the years.

History

The house was built by the Reverend Robert Taylor in 1738. The house remained in the Taylor family until 1962 when the estate to Heinrich Potts of Westphalia.

In 1982 the estate was sold to Fingal County Council, and it is now open to the public.

Trivia

The ghost of a woman was believed to haunt the bridge (known locally as The Lady's Stairs) that exists over the nearby railway line at the end of the garden. It was said that the woman's husband was a frequent swimmer, and when he did not return one night, she went to the bridge to await his return. The tale then claims her husband had died while swimming, and she stayed at the bridge to await his return until she died. A more "horror-like" version of the tale claims that if one is to go the end of the bridge at midnight on Halloween, her ghost appears and throws you to the ocean, leading to one's death. The bridge was damaged by a truck strike in 2006 and was eventually renovated and reopened in 2007.

In 2005 the estate was host to a number of open air concerts in the summer time. Pop artists who have played here include Moby, REM, Meat Loaf and Status Quo. No more concerts have been held at the venue since and it still remains to be seen if the County Council plans to host any in the future.

External links

http://www.ardgillanskerries.com



Source en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ardgillan_Castle