Major upgrades to Ormond Castle were opened following €270,000 investment through Fáilte Ireland’s strategic partnership with the Office of Public Works (OPW) and the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.
The interpretation and exhibition project, which started last year after the major phase of restoration to the physical structure had been completed, will greatly enhance the visitor experience at Ormond Castle, building on its existing reputation with visitors as one of the key sites on the Butler trail and positioning it as a key attraction within Ireland’s Ancient East.
This is just the first phase of funding by Fáilte Ireland into Ormond Castle with further investment planned to enhance the wider site.
Ormond Castle is the best example of an Elizabethan manor house in Ireland and the only major unfortified dwelling from the Tudor period still in existence. The castle was built by Thomas Butler, the 10th Earl of Ormond in the 1560’s, who was a ward of the English Royal Court and the castle plasterwork, regarded as of the finest decorative plasterwork in Ireland, is testament to Butler’s close relationship with Queen Elizabeth I.
The newly launched Interpretative Scheme at Ormond will allow visitors to explore and engage with the great stories and characters associated with Ormond Castle and provide visitors with real insights. Interactive digital books on Tudor lecterns will provide information in eight languages on the paintings, the OPW’s restoration and the rich heraldic symbolism on Ormond's plaster ceilings, friezes and stone carved mantelpieces.
The development of the interpretative scheme at Ormond Castle is part of a €16 million investment by Fáilte Ireland in 18 key OPW projects to significantly enhance the visitor experience at key locations across the country.
Other OPW sites included within the Fáilte Ireland strategic partnership are:
The above figures relate to total project costs; Fáílte Ireland are contributing, on average, 75% of costs, with the balance being made up from OPW and Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.