07 July 2022

Hay Castle Royal Opening

Hay Castle opened on May 26th 2022 after a major renovation project lead by MICA Architects. Opening in May to coincide with the Hay Festival, the world-renowned literary event, the official opening saw The Prince of Wales arrive in the Market Square, welcomed by the sound of Brecon Town Band. This event officially opens the castle which can now be visited by the public for the first time in its 900-year history.

Thanks to the National Lottery Heritage Fund, foundations and individual donors, the town now has an important heritage destination, a vibrant new centre for learning and the arts, and a space for the community to come together, Clarence House said.

Visitors can see and hear stories from the past using smart phones and iPads, enjoy dressing up in medieval costumes sewn by volunteers, have a go on a 150-year-old Columbian letterpress or watch a three-minute animated history of the castle projected onto the stone walls of the medieval tower. There is also a new Clore Learning Space which provides a place for inspiring adult workshops as well as school visits. The specially-designed loans gallery will host touring exhibitions; the inaugural display ‘Portraits of Writers’ features works from the National Portrait Gallery and is funded by Arts Council England.

At the top of the tower viewing platform, visitors will be treated to stunning views of the Wye Valley and border landscapes.

The Richard Booth Collection – established as a tribute to the former owner of the castle, and self-declared King of Hay – can be found in his study and includes his crown, sceptre and robe, and the original flag of independence.

Further reading in the following links

Hereford Times

Museums + Heritage

The refurbished Hay Castle - Copyright Chris Jackson/PA Wire
The Prince of Wales officially opens Hay Castle by pushing open the oldest gate in situ - Copyright Chris Jackson/PA Wire.
The refurbished interior spaces
The Prince of Wales meets with members of the public - Copyright Chris Jackson/PA Wire
View from Hay Castle - Copyright Stuart Townsend
The refurbished Hay Castle - Copyright Stuart Townsend
1 / 6 The refurbished Hay Castle - Copyright Chris Jackson/PA Wire

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