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Ardgillan Castle School Tours & Birthday Parties

Education Tours

The Ardgillan Castle tour is approximately one hour long and 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 once lived in the castle. Visitors will get the chance to explore the castle and enjoy the same atmosphere that the Taylors experienced from 1738, when the castle was built, right up to 1962, when it was eventually sold.

School groups will get the chance to explore the castle and collection in depth. Our education team all have experience working with school groups and bringing history to life. The tour will give schools a chance to see what life was like in a ‘Big House’ and to witness the stark contract between life upstairs and downstairs.

To coincide with a tour of the house, schools will be given the opportunity to engage with the castle by taking part in an interactive quiz and trail through the castle. This quiz has been devised to tie in with the developmental skills that are needed for children to advance. Using the cognitive skills and exploring the changes through time, children will be able to engage more fully with history and heritage.

Education Workshops

Ardgillan Castle offers a comprehensive and diverse collection of interactive and educational workshops which can be included as part of a school tour. All workshops are €5 per student. These include:.
Life in the Big House Workshop:
In this workshop children will get the chance to meet the Butler or House Keeper who will take them on a tour of the castle. Children will be given the opportunity to take on different roles within the house and ‘interview’ for the position. Others will also be given the chance to be the Lady or Lord of the Castle and learn about how life would have been in a stately home in the 18th century.

Upstairs/Downstairs Story Workshop:
Children will get to learn about life in the Victorian Times. The group will get the opportunity to hear how people lived in a big house, with a workshop held, Upstairs in the Dining Room and then Downstairs in the kitchen. The contrast between the life of the family and the servants will be explained. Children will also learn about society at the time; themes include food, pastimes, crime, education and lifestyle. They will also get the chance to hear about the people who lived at Ardgillan in Victorian times, including the servants. The upstairs/downstairs story of life in a big house is central to this theme. 

Folklore and Storytelling Workshop:
In this workshop we delve into the art of storytelling and folklore. At Ardgillan there are tales of ghosts and spooky goings-on and we use this material to aid children in creating their own stories. We also discuss the use of storytelling and writing using the diaries of Marianne St Leger Taylor as a resource tool. What impact does writing have on our mind frame? Is it good to tell stories? Are stories, diaries, and poems etc. useful tools? Do they help us to learn about history and heritage?

Fairy Tree Trail:
Ardgillan Castle has launched the newest addition to its already spectacular parkland with the creation of a Fairy Tree Trail. This project was created in collaboration with Fingal County Council and is free of charge. The trail is dotted around the woodland area of the walled garden and offers visitors a chance to learn about the different varieties of trees growing at Ardgillan. Throughout the trail there are informative panels with interesting information on the many species growing in the park. A map and quiz has been created to coincide with the trail. The quiz will give students a chance to learn more about the different species of tree in their environment and will also give them the opportunity to engage with the landscape and learn about the many different uses of trees and wood.

Birthday Parties - Would you like to be King or Queen of the Castle?

Our children’s parties have proved to be a huge success since they were introduced in the summer of 2010. Our entertainment team put on a fantabulous interactive show making the Ardgillan children & family parties legendary in these here parts, providing you with the East Coast’s most unique & spectacular parties, catering for up to 25 children, which, include:
  • A Party Entertainer
  • Private Party Area (Fully Decorated)
  • Regal Costumes For Everyone
  • Mini Disco & Games
  • Interactive Story Telling Tour
  • Light Food Options

    To find out more about our School Tours & Birthday Party packages, contact us below:

    Balbriggan, Co Dublin
    tel: 01 8492212