Cassilis Castle is a category A listed property dating back to the 13th century. Immensely historic, the castle has been owned by the Kennedy family – the famed ‘Kings of Carrick’ since it was built. The original structure was added to for the 12th Earl between 1830 and 1832 and now stands as a landmark throughout the local district.
The property is laid out over five floors, and the drawing room, with its magnificent fireplace is stunning, as are the hall and dining room which also have notable fireplaces. The ballroom is almost 30ft in length and is a wonderful example of period architecture of the time, as is the library. The castle also features an original spiral staircase which was part of the original Keep of Cassillis, and is built clockwise to ensure an easy defence by a right-handed swordsman. There is also a secret staircase which was for the use of the Earl and his family only complete with sign which reads: ‘Step no further master Porter!’ The castle has twelve bedrooms, with nine currently in use and the original kitchen, which leads out to the castle courtyard, is currently in the (well-lit) basement and in need of some modernisation.
Outside are the stable blocks which comprise two properties, workshops, stores, garaging and three stables, and the West Gate lodge is a lovely period cottage standing at the gates to the castle. The Gardener’s cottage has a walled garden and is on the eastern side of the entrance drive. There is one further cottage, the Kennels cottage, which benefits from a very private pretty position overlooking a pond and the river Doon.
The property also benefits from salmon fishing rights on the river – 0.8 miles are double bank and an additional mile is single bank. The river Doon is the best salmon fishing river in Ayrshire, and although the river hasn’t been heavily fished the catch in 2007 was still 76.
The castle is just a few miles from Prestwick airport and 42 miles from Glasgow. Ayr is about 7 miles to the north and provides a wide range of shops, supermarkets, professional services and schools, notably Wellington School which offers private co-education. The Ayrshire coast is famous for golf, with championship courses at Royal Troon, Prestwick and Turnberry. Ayr Racecourse has regular race meetings and hosts the Scottish Grand National.
The guide price is £2.5m. For further information, please contact Savills on 0131 247 3704 or visit www.savills.co.uk.