Guest Book  page 2

We have decided to create this page so that you can voice your views about the castle's condition . All we ask for is a name to attach to the letter. We will not attach your email addresses to the letter in the interests of security. We look forward to hearing  from you.

My Castle memories listen to music that inspired me as you read Click here

I remember my summer holiday's in North Wales and especially being very excited about visiting Gwrych Castle. Although I don't recall the interior decor to well I do remember what great day's my family spent at the castle. I am totally shocked and greatly saddened about the deterioration that has been allowed to happen and will be contacting my local MP "Andy Burnham" secretary to David Blunkett. Hopefully a word in President Blair's ear may help a little.
Brian


Hi approx 12 years ago myself sister and both our children decided to take a weeks holiday in towyn. The first day we went to the beach and by chance spotted this magnificent castle hiding in the hills and forestry, both my sister and me share a passion for castles and historic buildings and we decided to set out to look for this building, we asked around and found a bus that took us nearby, we then found the entrance/gatehouse and spoke to the lady who lived there who gave us a brief download on the castle. We asked if we were able to get near the building and she said it was up to ourselves as the present owners had dogs guarding it and the grounds, we walked up as far as we could until the barbed wire prevented us from carrying on, our sole aim was to see and touch the beautiful sight before our eyes and we were prevented from doing so.

We visited daily for the rest of the week but felt so sad that we couldn't get close enough, we took many photos which we treasure and look at often. We have never visited since but would if someone could tell us if we could get a little closer to it. We found an amazing sight from a stroll along the beach and became enchanted by it. I would love to visit Gwrych Castle and feel the history of the place. Wendy


Dear Chris
Like you I am in the process of trying to save a castle from destruction, and like you have found the local authorities to be of no help at all. the difference between your cause and mine is the owners of my cause still live in the castle, but will not maintain it, this has put Castle Goring on English Heritage AT RISK list and may force the local council to compulsory purchase the estate, sounds good doesn't it? this council has destroyed all of the other seven historical manor houses in the area by the same neglect that your castle is suffering now.

This website is brilliant , and if I were you, I would be proud of what you have done so far, be it a long way from the ultimate goal of saving this beautiful castle, how bad would it be if you took the councils stance, and said " not my concern "?
keep up the great work, I will keep looking at your site to see how things are going, and will also send the link to your site to all in my address book, to try and get the people of Sussex aware, if not behind you.
good luck
Doug


I have just returned home after a nights camping in the grounds of Gwrych castle.
I first visited the castle to see the jousting when I was a boy and was telling my own four children about it as we walked up to see the castle in the early evening.
All I can say is what a shock and what a shame
Steven

Hi, I was 'over the moon' to find this site as I love the castle and visit it
whenever I can and have watched, with sadness, it's decline. I have printed
out the membership form and you will receive my cheque shortly, and will
submit an entry to the guest book. I would like to be considered for any
volunteer work for maintaining the grounds perhaps any charity work as well?

Yours Jill

I discovered Gwrych Castle this weekend when camping within the grounds near the golf course. I can't believe what an effect the castle has had on me. I wanted to know the history, who built it, who owned it - why was such an awe inspiring building being left to vandals and the elements? Your web site has been informative and positive. The castle at least has supporters, so there must be hope. Why is the present American owner not involved in the safe-keeping of the castle? Do they have any idea of the responsibility they carry?
My family walked around the castle in respectful silence. We couldn't believe the sheer size of the place or the beautiful detail of windows, doorways etc. Unfortunately, a motorbike rambler disturbed our inspection of the castle as he tore around the castle grounds. I would love to find out more information about preserving the castle. I am still overwhelmed by the effect the castle had on me. I love history, and historic buildings in general but none have captured my imagination like Gwrych Castle. Please keep up the good work.
Melanie

Hi,
I know many people that would be willing to help and try get backing for funding for castle restoration. I am only at the age of 16 and so are many of my friends but we have all seen the devastation for our own eyes. We all talk about how we would have loved to have seen the castle as it would have been in its prime condition.
I feel that this castle should be refurbished and then be reopened to the public!! If anyone knows how to begin the refurbishment, then I think that every one that reads this would be willing to take action to try and restore this wonderful castle to how it once looked!!
Rob

My Welsh friend Bob alerted me to this site. I live on the west coast of the United States. Our oldest buildings are the Jesuit missions of Father Junipero Serra that are remnants of Spanish rule over what is now California, built during the early 1700s before the USA even existed. Sadly, they too mostly fell into disrepair and ruin in the 1800s. However, most of them have now been restored or completely rebuilt and are wonderful places to visit and experience the history of this area. Such a wonderful, historic place as Gwrych Castle certainly deserves similar treatment, in contrast to its current state. I fondly hope your web site will draw enough attention to make this happen.

Pat (California)


I live in Abergele and go to the castle quite frequently. I am sickened by the continuing attacks by idiots (that's all I can call them) who have reduced the Castle to its present state. In the last few weeks they have systematically pushed down one turret and over the winter have torn up the surrounding area with scramble bikes.
All the bricked up doors and windows have been forced and are now open to the elements.
The castle is in a beautiful setting and I cannot believe that something cannot be done about its preservation. If things are allowed to continue the way they are there won't be much left of the buildings for future generations. I fully support the wonderful job you are doing.

Bob

What a shame to see Gwrych Castle go so fast. When I was about 15 ish I'd see falling down castles etc and think why didn't anyone do something. When I saw Gwrych in about 1990, as I knew the then "caretaker" I was appalled to see it still happening. I wanted to do something but we were told no-one could go there and the owner soon after employed a "caretaker" who had vicious dogs. So, I never went again. The marble fireplace going is just unbelievable. What a great shame. I have an old 60's I think postcard of the castle at home somewhere. I'll >try and dig it out and scan and send on. All the best with the renovation attempt.
Tim

I have just found your site and am horrified by the condition of the Castle. I knew it in the late 70s and 80s and remember the start of the rot - literal and metaphorical (it always seemed rather damp, musty and underused, and was never presented as the great country house it was, but just as a useful shell for other activities), but am amazed at the speed of the decay and the evident unwillingness of the local authority (and Cadw) to do anything other than wring their hands about it. I have often thought Wales was half a century behind the rest of the country when it came to architectural conservation, and this state of affairs just strengthens my view.
Gareth

As a new visitor to your area, and a long time member of Cadw, I was fascinated by the castle and recently walked up the long drive to view it from a closer location. I took several photographs of this still beautiful, but rather sad building and I am appalled at the state the Castle has been allowed to reach.
Something must be done to halt the decay and hopefully eventually refurbish the premises. What about the charity making approaches to the Lottery Commission for a grant towards it??
Although not strictly an ancient monument, it is listed and as such should receive the care it deserves. Laurie

Hi there, I have just been on your website and was shocked at how bad the place looked. A few of my friends went to the castle on New years Eve and they said it was bad but I didn't realise how bad. I used to go regular to the castle around 1989-1991 when my one of my mates "looked after" the place for the woman who owned it. It was on its way out then, in fact the main room of the main hallway collapsed on his motorbike. I have been back only once in the last 11 years, about 1995. The main staircase was still there then, as far as I remember, but the roof had caved in at the top of the landing. I am highly surprised that CADW have not stepped in to help, as a Grade 1 listed should be well and truly in their interest to save, how bad would it look on them to let it fall to the ground.

Dave

Hi,
Most Abergele residents that I have spoken to agree with you and I remember, as a youngster, it having been an interesting and lively tourist attraction. I think that there was even a small gauge railway operating there years ago.
Some local Abergele residents have told me that it is now owned by an overseas investor but has been occupied by transient people (squatters) without permission and has fallen into quite a serious state of disuse.
It is not, however, an ancient monument, such as the castle at Rhuddlan, which could do with either a refurbishment returning it to its former state or a replacement replica of the original Welsh hill fort there (that I understand existed prior to the English castle).