Where is the I’m A Celebrity castle? All you need to know about the venue and visiting it

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  • As the final countdown to I’m A Celebrity 2021 gets underway, fans of the jungle will be familiar with the news that the show is being filmed in the UK for a second year running but many want to know where is the I’m a Celebrity Castle?

    And while the British weather won’t dampen our spirits – as we sit watching the show from the comfort of our own homes – the contestants might get a little chilly as they head off to camp inside the walls of the ‘creepy’ castle.

    The show returns to Wales for the 21st series, and aside from wondering what days is I’m A Celeb 2021 on? and who will win I’m A Celebrity 2021? A lot of viewers want to know more about the historic site…

    Where is the I’m A Celebrity castle?

    I’m A Celebrity 2021 is being filmed at Gwrych Castle in Abergele, north Wales for a second year.
    Coronavirus prevented a return to the Australian jungle so 10 celebrities are currently in quarantine ahead of the doors to the Grade I listed 19th-century house opening on Sunday, 21st November.
    But vandalism, prior to the castle being handed over to the show, almost caused issues. A member of staff at the castle claimed they saw three children “demolishing the battlements” – the same day the venue closed to be set up for I’m A Celeb.

    Speaking to the Press Association, the staff member said he was “astonished”, adding: “Thankfully nobody was injured, but part of the Grade l-listed building was damaged.”

    The Castle uploaded a picture in which bricks can be seen missing from part of the building’s wall, and they tweeted, ‘Our final day reminded us how far we’ve come, but also how much we have left to do over the coming years.

    ‘It was a huge shame to see that somebody damaged one of the restored battlements on the east lawn on our last day. This goes to show the huge task we have ahead of us!’

    Does anyone live in Gwrych Castle?

    In 1946 Gwrych Castle – meaning “Hedged Castle” – was sold and then it passed through subsequent owners and is now derelict.

    All of the windows are cast iron and the fantastic stained glass has vanished. It’s been years since the castle’s been occupied.

    Gregory Smith, property expert at PriceYourJob.co.uk said, “The castle is located nearby transport links and set over 200ft above sea level creating beautiful views of the surrounding country.

    “It has a reported 26 bedrooms, seven bathrooms, and nine reception rooms within an estate of 1,400 acres.

    “The large stone archways to the courtyard creates a visual masterpiece. It has been transformed for the show to accommodate the celebrities living and sleeping inside the ruined building,” he added.

    Among its previous occupiers were Henry Kennedy, who was employed to extend the Castle during the 1840’s by the inclusion of a new bedroom wing, staircase, and porch whilst George Bullock and the Craces furnished the interiors.

    When Lloyd died, the Castle was passed onto Robert Bamford-Hesketh and his wife, Ellen Jones-Bateman.

    Who owns the Castle on I’m A Celebrity?

    The castle and 236-acre estate are privately owned by Mark Baker, founder of the Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust.

    His Trust bought the derelict building in 2018 for £1million, according to the Radio Times.

    But a portion of the land is leased to Natural Resources Wales on a 999-year term.

    As a charity, the preservation trust relies on public support, and every penny that it raises goes towards the conservation and restoration of the Gwrych Castle Estate.

    Prior to the Preservation Trust taking over the building, the castle was sold in 1946 and had subsequent owners before being left derelict.

    Since film crews first used the site in 2020 for filming I’m A Celebrity, the castle has gone from strength to strength and earlier this year, when it was announced the show would return to the castle, Dr. Mark Baker, Chair of the Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust said it would “really help support its ongoing restoration as well as giving the region a much-needed economic boost”.

    He added, “I’m absolutely delighted that I’m A Celebrity has chosen Gwrych Castle to be its UK location for the 2021 series…we are all very excited to be working with the team again.”

    Is Gwrych Castle open to the public?

    Yes, visitors can tour parts of the castle and its grounds, which have a rich history that dates back hundreds of years.
    But it is worth noting that the castle has now temporarily closed to the public to allow TV producers to begin preparing for the series of I’m A Celebrity.
    Mr Smith said, “Last year ITV paid £300,000 to use the castle, the fee helped to restore the castle and renew the old interior.
    “As an old castle, some elements had to endure a whole restore, mainly the roof which got updated with slate roofing.
    “This is a long-term investment that essentially turned Gwrych Castle into an attraction last year,” he added.
    The main building is a ruin and so there is currently no public access, but there are “a few interior areas” which can be visited when it does re-open its doors to the public in the Spring.
    You can plan your trip to Gwrych Castle by pre-booking your tickets for 2022 or by purchasing an annual pass for free access to the castle’s visitor route during normal opening hours.
    Tickets for Adults cost £10 each, Concession £8, Children (aged 3-15) £5 and under 3s get free admission. Alternatively, family tickets (two adults and up to three children) cost £30.
    You can also show your support for the building by purchasing gifts from the online shop – from official, I’m A Celebrity merchandise and its own official merchandise and e-gift vouchers plus much more!
    If you can’t wait until Spring, you can see the castle in the video filmed in 2019 below…

    Meanwhile, real-life ghost encounters by visitors to Gwrych Castle are commonplace, but are you brave enough to join them?

    Each investigation is hosted by a professional in-house team, who have been leading tours on the estate for many years.

    For just £40pp you will take part in vigils around the grounds of the castle, and where possible, in the newly restored sections of the main building. After your initial check-in, you will be given a short welcome talk followed by an equipment presentation. After the talk, you will be taken with the other vigil guests on a ‘safety walk’ and history tour around the Castle by our in-house team.

    After the walk, everyone will be divided into smaller groups. Then, in your smaller groups, vigils will take place in and around the Castle using a range of paranormal equipment; including dowsing rods and K2 meters. You will also have the opportunity to take part in table tipping if you wish.

    Mr Smith believes the value of the castle is set to increase in the coming year’s thanks to I’m A Celebrity.

    He explained, “The show has allowed the castle to become a famous landmark and allowed others to investigate the rich history.

    “It always had plans to turn the building into a well-known attraction prior to being taken over by The Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust, and now it’s just done that.

    “The value will be bound to increase and continue to flourish as a landmark in its own right.”