No, we aren’t in France – the name Chatelherault derives from the title of Duc de Châtellerault presented to James Hamilton, 2nd Earl of Arran, in 1548 and to subsequent Dukes of Hamilton. Their home, Hamilton Palace, was demolished in 1921: Chatelherault, designed by William Adam, is merely a hunting lodge built in 1734 to provide the 5th Duke with estate buildings, stables and kennels. Normally you can see inside, but it had been hired for a Bridal Shower when we visited last week, so we contented ourselves with a stroll around the exterior. Strange place to practice your drums, we thought.

The grounds are now a country park, so we chose the longest of its trails and set off on what must be the muddiest walk of the year so far: a 5 mile round trip down one side of the Avon Gorge to the Green Bridge and back up the other. (The Avon Water is a tributary of the Clyde.)

Just before arriving back at Chatelherault, we passed the Cadzow Oaks and the remains of Cadzow Castle. This might be the oldest surviving oak woodland in Scotland – some of the trees have been dated at over 500 years old.

The castle is of similar age, probably built around 1500-1550, and only seems to be held up by massive scaffolding, courtesy of Historic Scotland.

From here, it was a short trip across the Duke’s Bridge and back to the car-park at Chatelherault. We’d been so busy lacing our boots up when we arrived that we hadn’t noticed this totem pole behind the car.

Where has everyone else been walking lately? Find out at Jo’s Monday Walks.


44 thoughts on “Chatelherault

  1. Pit April 11, 2016 / 14:52

    “Avon”: I keep wondering hjow many rivers are called by that name in the UK!
    Thanks, Anabel, for taking us around that park. I really enjoyed the virtual tour, especially as I didn’t get muddy feet! 😉
    Have a great week,


      • Pit April 11, 2016 / 15:02

        Interesting. I didn’t know that. Thanks for the info. 🙂


  2. April 11, 2016 / 16:51

    Wow! Those oak tress are amazing, as are the bridges, the castle, etc. And, yes, that’s a very strange place to play the drums… but at least he wasn’t bothering his neighbors!


  3. helenmackinven April 11, 2016 / 19:38

    Another place to add to my ‘must visit’ list – thanks. 🙂


    • Anabel Marsh April 11, 2016 / 21:28

      Oh yes, if you haven’t been you should go. Hopefully the old buildings will be open.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Silvia Writes April 11, 2016 / 23:32

    I want to go to all the places you’re taking us to, Anabel. So beautiful. Lovely trees, so much life. Thank you.


  5. Liesbet April 12, 2016 / 00:05

    The shape of the oaks are incredible and their age even more remarkable. It must feel pretty eerie as well as overpowering to walk in an area of over 500 years old. Thank you for taking us on yet another amazing walk in Scotland, Anabel! We haven’t been walking much lately, in between house sits. But, we did enjoy strolling along the waterfront and in the historic center of our “base” town in New England, USA.

    Liesbet @ Roaming About – A Life Less Ordinary


  6. restlessjo April 12, 2016 / 11:54

    Hi Anabel! Didn’t get your ‘ping’- sorry! They tell me it’s a current WP malfunction? Still trying to return visits to my comments, which is what brought me here. 🙂 Wet outside and I’ve done the ironing. Time for a little catch up before I meet a friend for coffee. Mud??? Yes- we found our share yesterday in North Yorkshire. 🙂 Don’t we just have some beautiful country houses though? This one looks beautiful. You had me discombobulated (me and Jude like that word 🙂 ) with the Avon Gorge because I thought we were in Bristol, but all’s well that ends well. 🙂
    Many thanks for your company and support, Anabel. Happy walking!


  7. Sarah Ferguson and Choppy April 12, 2016 / 18:25

    I nearly wiped out walking Choppy last week on the mud. Thankfully, no actual falling down happened.

    As for walks, I’m hoping to get out at my parents’ house a little late this afternoon. I need to check their woods to see what sort of things have poked their heads out of the ground in the hope that spring has finally arrived!


    • Anabel Marsh April 12, 2016 / 21:29

      I had to be really careful on the downward slopes not to fall on my behind. Has happened in the past (messy).


  8. Jessica (Diverting Journeys) April 13, 2016 / 15:33

    I laughed out loud at that drummer. I can picture him hauling all his drum kit over muddy fields, in a desperate ploy for attention. I like those gnarled old oaks and that crumbling castle too!


  9. Marcia Strykowski April 14, 2016 / 00:56

    Looks heavenly there, love the trees, bridges, and the castle (especially that entranceway!).


  10. Ellen @ The Cynical Sailor April 14, 2016 / 14:10

    I love this post! My hubby is currently working in Glasgow and he goes walking at Chatelherault all the time. In fact, he just sent me a picture of one of those spooky old oak trees.

    Cheers – Ellen


    • Anabel Marsh April 14, 2016 / 14:20

      Amazing! That’s a coincidence. This was a couple of weeks ago, otherwise I could say maybe we passed him. At the moment, no – we’re now in Toronto.


  11. Alex Hurst April 15, 2016 / 23:24

    Amazing… The upkeep on that country club must be outrageous! But it is so beautiful. And that trail looks spectacular. I loved the trees in particular. Big, rotund trunks, like they’re drunk on their own sap. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  12. cassam101 April 19, 2016 / 14:59

    I keep meaning to visit here with the grandchildren but I think I’ll wait until it’s not so muddy.


    • Anabel Marsh April 19, 2016 / 16:47

      Good plan – though it’s not so muddy round the house and I don’t suppose you’d want to go as far as we did with wee ones. There’s a playground and indoor play area too.


  13. corinnevail April 19, 2016 / 16:08

    I love the name! I think it looks so romantic. I love the twisted trees and the green lawn, such a contrast. Beautiful.


    • Anabel Marsh April 19, 2016 / 16:49

      Thanks Corinne, it is rather romantic – the interiors too. Next time we might get pictures of them.


  14. lisadorenfest April 24, 2016 / 04:48

    Chatelherault is definitely an odd place to play drums :-). Beautiful building. And love the old trees.


  15. Denzil April 24, 2016 / 19:34

    I always appreciate how you take time to caption your photographs Anabel. There’s a lesson there that I need to learn!


    • Anabel Marsh April 24, 2016 / 19:38

      I didn’t for a long time – now wondering if it’s worth it. It takes so long!


  16. Lori L MacLaughlin May 4, 2016 / 16:12

    Love the wild trees and the ruins and the mossy sign. As beautiful as the estate buildings are, if I had to choose, I’d explore the ruins and the woods.


  17. jazzfeathers May 10, 2016 / 07:49

    My goodness! I have so much to catch up with. I’d better get going 😉

    Chatelherault is a beautiful place, but let me tell you that I’m just fascinated by Cadzow Oaks and Castle. I mean, that’s such a magic place, so different, so old. I really love it 🙂


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