Drum Castle

Trip Start May 22, 2005
1
4
15
Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of United Kingdom  ,
Monday, August 15, 2005

We woke up this morning, the sun was shining and we had no particular plans so the question was 'where shall we go?' Scotland is probably known for its castles about as much as it is for its mountains and lochs so we decided to head off to Drum Castle, one of the many which are in our area.

When we arrived we discovered that they were having some sort of Scottish Heritage weekend and there were a few events on in the gardens. The outside of the castle, although very nice doesn't have the sort of dramatic presence that some of the others like Dunottar have. For a start Drum is not a ruin and second it sits among manicured lawns and gardens rather than perched on the top of a cliff, so the whole feel of the castle is somewhat different.

Its a bit of a hotchpotch of styles with bits having been added on throughout time with a mixture of medieval, Jacobean and Victorian styles. The tower is the oldest bit and probably dates from before 1286 which makes it the oldest intact building in the care of the National Trust for Scotland but more amazing is the fact that it was owned by the same family, the Irvine family, for more than 650 years after they acquired the castle in 1323 when King Robert the Bruce gave the Tower of Drum to William de Irwyn. They stayed there until 1975 when it was handed over to the National Trust. We wandered inside and decided that seeing as we are on a quest to see Scotland, we might as well join the National Trust which should save us money in the long run and inspire us to see more, so a few minutes later and 50 quid lighter, we started to explore the castle itself.

Each room had an attendant who pointed out interesting things and told you a bit about the history of each room. It was quite an impressive place filled with magnificent antiques but I think we both agree that we prefer ruins in some ways where you can only imagine what it might have looked like, so we wandered back out onto the lawn stuffed ourselves with an enormous slab of chocolate cake washed down with tea then wandered around the gardens. The most impressive area was the formal rose gardens with each section split into styles from the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. The roses were really beautiful and along one of the walls there was gorgeous display of different flowers of really bright colours, not being rose garden type of people, we surprisingly quite enjoyed it.....

Until next time,

K & S
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