Although referred to as a castle, the residence at Ardgillan is a large country-style house with castellated embellishments. Originally named ‘Prospect’, the central section was built in 1738 by Robert Taylor, with the west and east wings added in the late 1700s. Initially the site was heavily wooded, the name Ardgillan being derived from the Irish “Ard Choill” meaning High Wood.
The castle was fully restored in the late 1980's, early 1990's as a FAS training project in conjunction with Dublin Co Council. It was officially opened on the 14th of May 1992 by President Mary Robinson.
Guided tours of the castle are available on demand. This is one of the most popular activities at Ardgillan – where all of the castle secrets are revealed. All of our tour guides are both experienced and well-informed with a great knowledge and understanding of the castle and its inhabitants, the Taylor family.
The Ardgillan Castle tour is an amazing opportunity to experience history at first hand. Many periods of social history are brought to life with the focus firmly on the family who used to live in the castle, and how they lived.
For instance, the formidable Marianne St Ledger Taylor was the lady of the manor for over 50 years in the nineteenth century and she left us fascinating detail in a series of diaries that she wrote in her eventful lifetime.
At the end of every day at Ardgillan she would record the day’s events; trips to Dublin, the theatre, visits to other manor houses, swimming on her private beach, taking the train from her private platform, getting married, holidays to Europe etc.
Visitors can walk in the same rooms, open the same doors, touch many of the same pieces of furniture, gaze out the same windows and experience
the same atmosphere that the Taylors experienced from 1738, when the castle was built right up to 1962, when they eventually sold it.
Tours start at 11.30 am and are on demand. Costs: €6.50 per adult, €5.00 per person for students, groups and seniors, and €13.00 for a family of two adults and two children (under twelve).