A COUNTRY house famed for hosting one of TV’s biggest reality shows has won the right the sell booze at the venue. Gwrych Castle near Abergele in Conwy will now be able to host wedding and birthday events after being granted an entertainment and alcohol licence.
The 19th century folly was the filming location for two seasons of ITV’s hit reality show I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here between 2020 and 2021 when the series was forced to abandon its usual base in the Australian jungle due to the coronavirus pandemic. Last week, representatives from the Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust – the group responsible for the castle – attended a Conwy licensing sub-committee meeting where the application for the licence was discussed.
Nearby residents had written to the council, complaining about potential noise from the Abergele venue and claiming that the site’s hillside location acts like a ‘big speaker’ for any noise generated at the site. The sub-committee went away to discuss the matter before the council announced the application had been granted this week. Last year Gwrych Castle was granted permission for civil marriages and civil partnerships.
Consequently, the trust needed permission to sell alcohol and provide entertainment and late-nigh refreshments. The castle can now host live and recorded music, dance, and performance indoors and outdoors seven days a week until 1 am.
The castle can now host live and recorded music, dance, and performance indoors and outdoors until 1am on Fridays and Saturdays – and until 11 pm on the other five days of the week.
The trust can also provide late-night refreshments indoors and outdoors on Fridays and Saturdays until 1 am, supplying alcohol on and off the premises between 10 am and 1am. On the other days of the week this is restricted until 11pm.
This was an offer made by the trust to ease concerns from residents.
The trust said marquees will be erected in the castle’s surrounding grounds for weddings but added different areas will be used as the castle is gradually restored as part of the restoration effort.
A spokesman for the castle said a special cocktail event is being planned to celebrate the licence being granted. “We’re delighted that the premises licence was given the go ahead so quickly,” he said.
“We already had a licence to hold civil ceremonies at the castle, so the approval of the premises licence will extend our offering for things like wedding and birthday parties. We hope this will bring more people into the town and local businesses will be used, from food and drink to event decor and styling.
“We will be holding a special event to celebrate called ‘Cocktails at the Castle’ during the summer.” He added: ‘More details will be announced soon.”