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Sunday, 11 March 2012

Antrim Castle Gardens

Otherwise known as The Castle Grounds...

"The former seat of the Skeffington family, Viscounts Massereene and Ferrard, Antrim Castle occupied its imposing setting on the banks of the Sixmilewater since 1610. The family began laying out the gardens in the late 17th century, and, while the castle itself was destroyed by fire in 1922, the principal features of the gardens, though somewhat neglected, have remained largely intact." You can read more about the Castle Grounds and its restoration project here. 

I've been visiting this site for years, it is pretty much on my doorstep and I try to bring Lola down here as much as possible, however, in the past year it has been nearly impossible as the council have funded a restoration project which has closed off a lot of the grounds. The Castle Grounds neighbours the Lough, and there is a long path which goes across the Six Mile Bridge that leads you to the Lough, it is a great straightforward walk and is also referred to as 'the highway to health' as many fitness enthusiasts use it for jogging and power walking.

We've witnessed the restoration steps and the overall outcome will look spectacular. It has been difficult to get decent photographs of the sites, so I hope you enjoy what we've snapped so far. The grounds have added a cafe and a gift shop, so you can now make a day of it, picnic facilities are also available. We can't wait for the finished project!

I have also added some photographs from Christmas when the grounds were quieter. 

Check out the above link for lovely photographs and more information.

You can volunteer for the restoration project

A glimpse of the bridge

The tower overlooking the Six Mile River

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A short walk over the bridge leads to Lough Neagh

Lola testing the water

The garden is stilled closed off

The weather is still very wintery 

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