Mugdock Castle

October 06, 2015

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Determined to make the most of the good weather before it undoubtedly becomes a windy, rainy mess up here in Scotland, we took the trip out to MUGDOCK COUNTRY PARK again. Last time I blogged about Mugdock we had never made it as far as Mugdock Castle which was unusual for us as it is the most common walk we take whenever we go there. With that in mind, when the husband suggested getting out for a walk on a sunny Sunday morning I armed myself dog treats and my camera and readily accepted the challenge.

The walk down to the castle from the visitor centre is possibly no more than twenty minutes. We trudged through the wet paths under the trees, my little white dog getting blacker by the minute as she chase the scents of other dogs and wildlife that had scurried along the path before her. Coming out into the open we enjoyed the warm sun and even spotted a group of men practicing archery in a field in the middle of the park. Not bad for a Sunday morning.  Squelchy, soggy leaves were replaced with crisp golden ones as we stomped our way to the castle.

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I say castle but really it is little more than the ruins to a once really fancy house. When the lands of Mugdock were owned by the Montrose Grahams in the mid-13th century, Mugdock Castle was built. It isn't known exactly when it was built however by 1372 the castle was there in all its glory. Sometime later in the 17th century, by order of the Scottish Parliament, the castle was partly destroyed. I'm not sure why but this is what history tells us happened and so in this case I'm just going to have to believe it!

What followed was a short change of hands between Montrose and the Marquees of Argyll before it returned again to Montrose and the castle was restored by building a mansion within the old castle walls. A terraced, walled garden followed when it was built to the east of the castle in 1820 with a summer house. This 17th century house didn't last for long and in 1875, it was demolished and another house was  built in the ruins, destroying a lot of the original castle which had stood in the 13th century.

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During the Second World War the building was commandeered by the government but by 1948 it was left empty. Despite the foundations and walls still remaining, it was subsequently demolished. In 1981, the castle and the grounds on which it sat were donated to the Central Regional Council to form what I now know as Mugdock Country Park. The ruins are accessible to the public and the remaining tower was converted into a museum although, to be honest, I don't know if this is still the case as I can't say I've ever seen it open!

It's a shame the best of the weather is now behind us as I'd love to get out a bit more and explore the other areas of Mugdock Country Park. I just don't think I'm brave enough to put up with the cold, wind and rain!
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1 comment :

  1. Who knew a castle could have such a busy history!


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