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Community Wealth Building Supports Launch of Film Programme at Dundonald Castle

Dundonald Castle CWB

South Ayrshire Council's Community Wealth Building team has supported Friends of Dundonald Castle with the launch of their new film programme.

The team provided grant funding for film and audio equipment, supplied by local firm Lairds of Troon. The newly established programme to show movies will be held within the castle under its atmospheric 14th century barrel-vaulted ceiling, and will continue for years to come.

The official launch event took place on Saturday 27 May and saw Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone premiered to a sell-out audience. The entire series of Harry Potter films will be screened throughout 2023.Tickets for these and all other film showings can be purchased through the Dundonald Castle & Visitor Centre website.

Dundonald Castle is a 14th Century hilltop castle which is looked after on a daily basis by The Friends of Dundonald Castle SCIO, who also manage the attraction's Visitor Centre.

The castle is one of Scotland's most unexplored and fascinating outdoor attractions - a heritage treasure, which was the historic home to Scots King Robert II, grandson of Robert the Bruce, and boasts historic links to the Stewart dynasty and the Cochrane and Wallace families. 

The Visitor Centre acts as a community hub for volunteering, skills development and cultural engagement. It also provides friendship opportunities for many people in the community and runs free community clubs and groups for all ages. Local artists and makers sell their produce at the centre's shop, which is visited each year by locals, visitors from the rest of the UK as well as further afield.

Recognising the importance of this site, South Ayrshire Council worked in partnership with Friends of Dundonald Castle SCIO and Historic Environment Scotland on the Community Asset Transfer of the Castle Visitor Centre, and an area of adjacent land to Friends of Dundonald Castle SCIO in 2021. Since then, the Community Heritage Programme at Dundonald Castle has gone from strength-to-strength.    

Councillor Bob Pollock, South Ayrshire Council's Portfolio Holder for Economic Development said: "I'm delighted that, through our Community Wealth Building programme, we've been able to support Friends of Dundonald Castle to grow with the introduction of their film programme.

"The purchase of this equipment has enhanced their facilities and will help the ch to generate greater income streams, and provide educational and exciting opportunities for locals, visiting schools, and visitors alike. I hope that each screening sees a full house at the castle and that the programme goes from strength to strength."

Dr Kirsteen Croll, General Manager of Friends of Dundonald Castle said: "The launch of our film series provides more opportunities for local communities to gather at the castle, as well as attracting audience members from further afield to experience the setting of our beautiful Dundonald Castle. 

"This has only been possible thanks to the support of South Ayrshire Council's Community Wealth Building team, who provided us with grant funding to purchase film and audio equipment to enable this to happen. We're also very grateful for the help provided to us by local family company Lairds of Troon."