Duke re­veals im­pres­sive In­ver­aray Cas­tle foot­fall

Argyllshire Advertiser - - NEWS -

COM­ING up fast on last week’s an­nounce­ment of a new clas­sic ve­hi­cle fes­ti­val next June at In­ver­aray Cas­tle, yet more pos­i­tive news has been re­vealed for the an­ces­tral home of the Dukes of Ar­gyll, writes Colin Cameron.

At the tra­di­tional soiree in the cas­tle mark­ing the end of an­other tourist sea­son, His Grace the Duke of Ar­gyll thanked staff for their hard work – and re­vealed some im­pres­sive at­ten­dance fig­ures.

The Oc­to­ber 27 gath­er­ing, which also marked the re­tire­ment of long-serving Ar­gyll es­tates sec­re­tary Mar­garet Mather – cov­ered in the Novem­ber 3 edi­tion of the Ad­ver­tiser – saw cas­tle and es­tate staff join the duke and his fam­ily for drinks and nib­bles in the cas­tle gun room.

In­ver­aray Cas­tle first opened to the pub­lic in 1953, the duke ex­plained, and many peo­ple had since passed through its doors.

He added: ‘If we look back to 1974, three spe­cial pad­dle steam­ers ran up Loch Fyne for the sum­mer sea­son, and in that year the cas­tle saw 120,000 vis­i­tors.

‘Dur­ing 2017, how­ever, with­out the ben­e­fit of steam­ers and in what has been a very test­ing year of weather, the cas­tle has had 117,000 vis­i­tors, which is ex­cel­lent.

‘I want to thank and con­grat­u­late ev­ery­one, whether in the kiosk, the cas­tle guides, the tea­room, es­tate staff and ev­ery­one else who con­trib­uted.’

The new Ar­gyll Fes­ti­val of Per­for­mance will run over two days from June 2 next year at In­ver­aray Cas­tle, with big names set to at­tend, in­clud­ing Sir Chris Hoy, Ewan McGre­gor, Amy Mac­don­ald and Sir Billy Con­nolly.

06_a44Mar­garetbe

His Grace thanks staff at the end-of-sea­son drinks and nib­bles event.

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