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New Slains Castle

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New Slains Castle is on the Aberdeenshire Coast, 27 miles north of Aberdeen, 1 mile northeast of the Village of Cruden Bay, that has a long Sandy Beach.

This Castle was built from the 1500s for Francis Hay, 9th Earl of Erroll, with much of what can be seen today built around the original Tower in the 1830s. The Castle is linked to the Dracula Novel. Postcode: AB42 0NE

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The image top is of New Slains Castle from the Path leading to the Castle. There is a 1 mile path from Cruden Bay Village out to the Castle. There is also a Car Park a few hundred yards north of the Castle, or you can drive right up to the Castle where there is also Parking. The Road from the Main Car Park to the Castle is loose surface.

The second image is of the East Side of the Castle next to the Rugged Coastline.

This is a good area to view nesting Sea Birds, with the Bullers of Buchan Sea Cliffs 1 mile further north. You can walk from New Slains Castle, or drive up to a Car Park by the Cliffs. Walk Information.

Birds that can be found along this coast are: Kittiwake, Puffin, Fulmar, Shag, Razorbill, Guillemot, Herring Gulls, Eider Duck, and Gannet.

Castle History

1300s - Clan Hay gained control of land in this area as they supported King Robert the Bruce in the First War of Scottish Independence.

The Bruce awarded Clan Hay the original Slains Castle, 5 miles south of where New Slains Castle stands today.

The original Slains Castle had been the property of the Comyn's, Earls of Buchan, who had fought against The Bruce.

1453 - Sir William Hay was made Earl of Erroll by King James II.

1560 - the Reformation in Scotland made Catholic Worship illegal. Protestant Churches were then supposed to regard the King as the head of their Churches, leading to a number of Wars.

1585 - Francis Hay became the 9th Earl of Erroll. Hay was involved in Rebellions with other Nobles, trying to restore Catholic Worship in Scotland.

1594 - Hay was declared a Traitor by King James VI, leading to Old Slains Castle being destroyed and Hay fleeing abroad.

1597 - Hay returned to Scotland, making peace with the King.

Hay then began the building of the Tower of New Slains Castle.

1820 - William Hay, 18th Earl of Erroll, married Lady Elizabeth FitzClarence, illegitimate daughter of King William IV.

1830s - William Hay had a Scottish Baronial Style Mansion built around the original Tower.

1893 to 1910 - the author Bram Stoker visited Cruden Bay on holidays.

1895 - Bram Stoker began writing the novel Dracula while staying at the Kilmarnock Arms Hotel in Cruden Bay.

This Book contains reference to an Octagonal Room in Castle Dracula, with New Slains Castle by Cruden Bay having an Octagonal Hall.

Bram Stoker also wrote two Novels while at Cruden Bay, The Watter's Mou' - 1895, and The Mystery of the Sea -1902.

1913 - the 20th Earl of Erroll sold New Slains Castle to Sir John Ellerman, of Ellerman Lines Shipping Company.

1925 - the Roof of New Slains Castle was removed to avoid paying Taxes.

2004 - Plans were made to restore the Castle to be used as Holiday Apartments.

2007 - Planning Permission was granted for New Slains Castle to be restored.

2008 - a Financial Crises hit the UK, and most of the World, leading to plans for the restoration of New Slains Castle being put on hold.

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New Slains Castle Photos