AFTER a fantastic 2023 - which included a £2million grant and the first civil wedding ceremony, Gwrych Castle have reflected on highlights from last year and what's to come this 2024. 

The I'm A Celebrity castle, near Abergele, hosted more events "than ever before" in 2023.

This year, the castle has a long list of events planned, from a Dragon Easter Egg Hunt, the return of School of Magic, Living History: HMS Wales, to a lecture series between June and September. 

More weddings are also on the horizon; the majority of enquires and bookings have been for 2024 and 2025.

A spokesperson for the Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust said: "We had more events than ever before last year, with an increase on immersive events to bring the castle to life. Some highlights include the launch of School of Magic, working with various charities and groups such as Scouts, Mind and young carers and of course the biggest highlight has to be the grant which will enable us to reinstate the roof and to install floors to the main building."

Talking more about the work, following the £2.2million grant from National Heritage Memorial Fund (NHMF) as part of their Covid-19 Response Fund, the spokesperson said: "Our team is currently collaborating closely with our architect, Chambers Conservation, to formulate the plans for this project, aiming to secure the necessary approval from the authorities.

"The commencement of the physical work on site is scheduled for the late Summer/early Autumn of this year, with an estimated duration of about12 months for its completion."

The money will save the ruin from "imminent collapse" and enable the trust to reinstate the roof on the main building; the castle has been a "roofless ruin" for 30 years. 

As the project moves forward, volunteers will be seeking additional funding for the complete restoration of the castle. They have aims to restore it to its former grandeur.

"The works will enable us to expand our offering and ultimately it will allow the building to dry out after being open to the elements for a very long time," the spokesperson said. 

There were plans to create an 'I'm A Celeb' experience so individuals could stay overnight at the castle.

This is currently on pause.

The spokesperson said: "It’s still something we would love to do at some stage."

Entering the wedding sector was a big thing for Gwrych Castle, which hosted ITV's I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out in 2020 and 2021.

Jill Adamson and her partner Nick Clitheroe were the first couple to tie the knot at the castle last May.

This was the first civil ceremony at the castle since the restoration project first started. 

The spokesperson said: "Following on from our first civil ceremony last year, we’ve had a lot of interest and enquiries. We have a few weddings booked in this year, along with potential bookings for 2025.


"The castle has a rustic romantic feel to it with the many archways and winding paths.

"As we progress through the restoration works, we will have more areas available to use in the near future."

The trust has signed up to the #ThanksToYou campaign with the National Lottery, with 2-for-1 tickets on May 6 and 17. The castle will be offering two tickets for the price of one on these dates. Learn more here.

Here are the events Gwrych Castle has planned for 2024! [Subject to change]

March 10: Mothering Sunday at Tan-yr-Ogo Lodge

March 16 and 17: 2-for-1 tickets as part of #ThanksToYou campaign

March 17: Tarot and Physic readings at Tan-yr-Ogo Lodge

March 23 until April 1: Dragon Easter Egg Hunt

April 2 until 7: School of Magic

April 8 until 14: Dragon Trail

May 25 until May 27: Living History HMS Wales

Lecture Series from June: September, tickets will be released soon.

June 27: Frederick Hervey-Bathurst - Physiology and Landscape of the Country House

July 25: Rob Chambers - Gwrych Castle: The Vision for Restoration

August 15: Shaun Evans - Researching Welsh Country Houses and Estates

August 29: Dr Erin Lloyd-Jones - Title TBC

September 19: Marina Cochrane - Title TBC

September 26: Martin Williams - Title TBC