Gwyrch Castle: I'm a Celebrity and beyond
Berthlwyd Hall Holiday Park - February 28th 2022
It has been announced that after 2 cold, wet and storm-ridden years, I'm a Celeb will be returning to Australia. During the pandemic, the relocation to North Wales provided a bit of levity and uplift to the local area when there wasn't much to be cheerful about.
As a tribute to the Gwyrch Castle, we'll shine a light on its history and what will happen now that Granada and ITV are moving out.
Gwyrch Castle's history
Well, the truth is Gwyrch isn't really a castle. Not a medieval one like you see in Conwy, Caernarfon and Beaumaris, anyway. It was built between 1812 - 1822 by Lord Hesketh Bamford-Hesketh in an ode to his ancestral links to the area.
The building does draw inspiration from the older castles that North Wales is so famous for, with 18 battlement towers and an imposing surrounding wall - some of which are visible as you drive past the site along the a55.
After Lord Hesketh passed in 1894, the castle was inherited by Winifred Cochran the Countess of Dundonald and it remained her private residence until 1924.
The castle then was used to house Jewish refugees during WW2 and was even the location for Randolph Turpin's training camp for his World Championship bout against Sugar Ray Robinson - and Turpin who has personal and business connections in Llandudno won!
The castle was then sold in 1989 and remained unused and fell into disrepair - until I'm a Celeb moved in.
I'm a Celebrity
Due to the Coronavirus Pandemic the popular ITV series, hosted by Ant and Dec, it was not possible to travel and film in Australia and another interesting turn in the history of the castle was taken when Gwyrch was announced as the new location.
The castle was used for two consecutive series in 2020 and 2021.
What next for Gwyrch Castle?
The castle had a much needed makeover and essential works were taken to restore the site after decased of neglect thanks to I'm a Celebrity. The profile of the beautiful Grade I listed building has also been raised massively, which stands it in good stead for a busy future where it hopes to become another popular addition to North Wales' growing lists of attractions.
Tours of the building now run and those brave enough can even go ghost hunting Winifred Cochran the Countess of Dundonald is said to haunt the premises dressed in white along with other figures in the castles long history.
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