Wednesday 23 April 2014

A Little Visit to - Chirk Castle, North Wales

Hi everyone, I hope you all had a fun chocolate filled Easter!  today I'm posting just a few pics from my last daytrip, where me and my boyfriend went to Chirk Castle in North Wales for the day!  Now when I say a few pics..... lol   Well I just couldn't help myself, these are literally just a few of the 76 photos that I took that day, yes I did say 76!

You can click on the photos to see them bigger if you like :-)

The whole visit was great fun from start to end, there was so much to see and the atmosphere inside the castle was so, well historic I guess, the castle was originally built in 1310 after all.  The main rooms were just beautiful, everything in sight was so elaborately decorated, with intricate paintings, gold details and amazing carvings from the candle sticks, to the furniture even to the walls and the ceilings alone were a work of art, as you can see in some of these photos.

Just look at these ceilings!!

The table in the center of this room was a perfectly carved and along with everything else was beautifully elegant. And you can just see the bottom of the huge chandelier, it really was stunning.

This beautiful long room was a lot bigger than it looks on here, the wallls are lined with portraits and you could just imagine this room being used for ballroom dances back in the ye'old days!

The staircase alone was magnificent, lined with a dark red carpet, gold accents all up the banister and again, another beautifully decorated ceiling above.

My boyfriend's not convinced but I'm pretty sure there's something a little 'other worldly' stood in or by the fireplace in this picture!  What do you think?

Imagine trying to walk in those!!

The old library was just crammed with these wonderful big old books, with worn spines and tatty pages, gorgeous!

 The Magistrates Court frieze (around the top of the walls) dates from the early 17th century and is the oldest surviving interior decoration in the original family's home.
This room was up high in one of the towers and had quite a spooky feel to it!

The other towers had several separate rooms for the guards and were a lot bigger that I'd imagined.

Then we went to the servants quarters, what a difference!  The walls, the floor, even the paintings were practically black with dirt and soot.  To think people had to live in these conditions!

And then there was... the dungeon!!!  Oh boy would I hate to be down there on my own!  It was honestly one of the scariest places.  You could feel this chilling icy cold air envelop you the further down we went and once we were down to the bottom, 9 meters below ground level, it was pitch black too apart from the little electric light they put in for the tourists!  There was a horrible dank smell too and I can easily say, a very horrible unearthly creepy feel about it.
There is a legend about the castle dungeon, apparently "The family arms included a red hand and this was the traditionally 'bloody hand' put there to remind them of past misdeeds.  According to the legend, it could not be removed until a prisoner survived 10 years in the castle dungeons!!  But the harshness of the dungeon took it's toll very rapidly and few prisoners survived for long.  One prisoner did seem about to rid the family of it's gruesome symbol, for he survived almost the full 10 years.  The dungeons must have defeated him in the end however, for the red hand remains on the arms to this day."
I really cannot even imagine spending 5 minutes down there, let alone surviving nearly 10 years, it's unbelievable that someone could go through that!!

In the courtyard the are several different entrances in to the main castle, there's also a very nice little cafe with tables and chairs outside where we ate our lunch.  And on one side of the courtyard there's an extremely deep well, I certainly would not like to drop anything down there!

The castle gardens are equally impressive, I can't wait to go back there in the summer when the flowers are all in full bloom.

There's a lovely big hut hidden away half way through the gardens, it's a wonderful place to just sit, listen to the birds and take in all the beautiful surroundings, it's so peaceful..

There's even a large family of peasants that live in the grounds.

Thank you for letting me post this picture handsome xx

What a gorgeous view!

All in all, it was a lovely visit, very interesting and definitely a place I'd happily visit again and again :-)

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