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Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Brodick Castle, Arran

A few weeks ago, my walking friend from Cumnock was down my way visiting family.
As a follow up to Culzean Castle we'd decided on a trip over to Arran and visit Brodick Castle.
As it turned out it was a bit of a whistle stop day. Traffic delays and bad roads meant we ended up spending six hours travelling, and just under three hours on the island.  
We just made the ferry at Ardrossan in time, and the crossing was pleasant enough.

Closing in on the island we could see the castle nestling in the trees under Goat Fell.

I zoomed in for a shot.

Sitting just outside Brodick is the Chemtrans Oste an oil/chemical tanker.
Looking at it's details it left here for Dublin and is now in Pembroke.

We disembark at Brodick. I get a picture of our ferry, the Caledonian Isles.
We board a bus which will take us to the castle gates.

Brodick was the home for 400 years of the Hamilton family, the Earls of Arran.
This from Scottish Places explains the family crest.
The crest of the dukes of Hamilton, an oak tree with a saw through it, commemorates his escape in the disguise of a woodcutter, whilst the motto 'Through' was Sir Gilbert' exclamation on seeing his pursuers ride unsuspectingly past the place where he and his servant were in the act of sawing through an oak tree.

There's a comprehensive map of the grounds...........

.........and some lovely gardens.

We had lunch overlooking the gardens and the bay with the company of a few finches.

Lady Jean Fforde, a cousin of Prince Rainier of Monaco.

There's some scaffolding up on one corner of the castle.

I had to stitch a couple of pictures together to get the whole castle in.
As usual with National Trust properties I wasn't allowed to take pictures inside.
 Inside however is an impressive collections of period furniture, silverware, porcelain, paintings and sporting trophies.(The sporting trophies are mainly horse racing trophies, they won almost every major classic at one time or another.)
After visiting the castle we began walking back towards Brodick for the ferry. Reaching Arran Aromatics we waited for a bus.
The ferry was much busier on the return.
We stopped to eat at the Lauriston Hotel Ardrossan. Great food great prices.
 The road between Girvan and Newton Stewart isn't a very pleasurable drive in the dark and we were glad to see the end of it. A nice outing, but spoiled somewhat with all the travelling. Early and late boats might make a better day.  


  1. Hope you enjoyed your flying visit Jim.Sounds like a mixed day with all the travel problems.I,ve came up that road in the dark a few times now.Even in daylight it takes you by surprise.

  2. What a marvellous place to visit! - it is frustrating when road and travel probs spoil an outing 'somewhat' - most impressed with the stitching Jim!

  3. Looks a great excursion. Can't help but notice the turquoise sky has a very different quality of light to it than down here at the moment (that is when we get to see the sky- it's that greyscale time of year here on the marshes).

  4. Ah, 3 hours on the island doesn't make for a relaxed visit but you've managed to slot the castle in.
    I like the crest on the gate - the story to go with it helps.
    That two pictures well sewn together - certainly the seam doesn't jump out at me.
    That's the national trust for you - I've been in several of their properties in the last few weeks and my memory card would be burting at the seams if I was allowed to take pictures inside - they have some real delights behind their walls - I would love to be let loose in some of their houses with a camera - I wonder if they give people preferential blogger status :)

  5. I would love to see that castle...looks like the adventure is worth the inconvenience!

  6. Thanks for your comments guys.
    Your comment made me look at the rules Sandy and I came across this.

    "Indoors at NT Properties
    Amateur photography (including filming) without flash is now permitted in historic interiors at the Property or General Manager's discretion. As with outdoor photography, any photographs taken are strictly for private use, and enquiries about selling or publishing photographs should be directed to"

    I think I need to print the whole page and take it with me when visiting houses because I've a feeling that very few Property or General Managers have read this.

  7. Having written the last comment, I of course still couldn't publish the pictures I took.

  8. They don't make finding out easy - at least not from my poor offshore internet connection. I could find nothing on the website but managed to surf up a 2007 set of rules which said that indoor pictures would have to be applied for and probably only happen outside normal opening hours. I have a tendancy to ask if I don't see a sign saying not to. At Hugh Millar's house, I was told i couldn't take pictures as many of the things were not in possession of the NTS and not theirs to give permission for but if there was anything in particular I wanted to photograph I could ask about that. Indeed they let me take pictures of their fireplace, so some managers do use a little discretion occasionally.

  9. thanks for sharing.


Thanks for all your comments. I may not get to reply to them all, but you may be sure they'll be appreciated.

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