Torosay Castle

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Torosay Castle

Torosay Castle is a large house situated 1½ miles south of Craignure on the Isle of Mull, in the Scottish Inner Hebrides.

John Campbell of Possil, son of Colonel Alexander Campbell of Possil, commissioned David Bryce to build Torosay Castle for the Campbell of Possil family.

It was designed by architect David Bryce for John Campbell of Possil (see Carter-Campbell of Possil) in the Scottish Baronial style, and completed in 1858. Torosay is surrounded by 12 acres (4.9 ha) of spectacular gardens including formal terraces laid out at the turn of the 20th century and attributed to Sir Robert Lorimer. The castle and gardens used to be open to the public, being linked to the Craignure ferry terminal by the Isle of Mull Railway.

The garden's Statue Walk is made up of 19 statues in the style of Italian sculptor Antonio Bonazza. The statues were acquired by then-owner Walter Murray Guthrie from a derelict garden near Milan and shipped to Scotland for next to nothing as ballast in a cargo ship.

John Campbell of Possil sold the castle and the estate to Arburthnot Charles Guthrie, a wealthy London businessman, in 1865. It served as his "getaway" and must have been ideal for that purpose, as the castle has over 60 rooms and is surrounded by an estate of over 12 acres (0.049 km2). The current owner is now the sixth generation of the Guthrie family to live in the castle. Following the sale of Guthrie Castle out of the Guthrie family, Torosay is now generally acknowledged as the seat for Clan Guthrie. However, the Castle was sold in 2012 to a Swiss buyer, and the castle and its gardens were closed to the public in the summer.[1]

The Campbell of Possil coat of arms on the south elevation of Torosay Castle incorporates three bugles (horns). These were taken from the armorial bearings of John Campbell's third wife, Elizabeth Williamson, daughter of Donald Horne, but were never matriculated by the Lord Lyon of Scotland.

The novelist Angela du Maurier, older sister of Dame Daphne du Maurier, is said to have spent some time residing at Torosay after her close companion Olive Guthrie (Great Grandmother of the present owner) was left a widow by the death of her husband Walter.[citation needed]Other visitors during the 1930s included Winston Churchill and the King of Greece.[which?]


Champagne find[edit]

In July 2008 the then oldest bottle of Veuve Clicquot champagne was discovered inside a sideboard in Torosay Castle. The 1893 bottle was in mint condition. It is believed to have been locked inside the dark sideboard since at least 1897. The champagne is now on display at the Veuve Clicquot visitor centre in Reims, France, and regarded as "priceless".[2]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "Torosay Castle sold after 147 years with one family". 2 October 2012. 
  2. ^ "Priceless champagne discovered". BBC News. 28 July 2008. Retrieved 2009-07-26. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 56°27′18″N 5°41′14″W / 56.45500°N 5.68722°W / 56.45500; -5.68722