Castle Grant is situated roughly one mile north of Grantown-on-Spey and was the former seat of the Clan of Grant chiefs of Strathspey in Highlands, Scotland. While it isn’t always common knowledge, this castle was formerly named Freuchie Castle but was renamed to Castle Grant later. It is now a Category A listed building, and the spacious grounds are included in the Inventory of Gardens and Designed Landscapes in Scotland.
The history of Castle Grant
Castle Grant is perched atop a rather large hill. It is often described as a looming mansion built around a substantial extended tower house that dates back to sometime in the 15th century, but only partially. Even with only a short history, this castle has been through a lot during its time.
The early history
Castle Grant was built in its popular Z-plan in the 15th century. The lands had previously been held by the Clan Comyn. However, they had passed to the Grants in the 15th century and it soon became their stronghold.
The 17th and 18th Centuries
The Grants were well known as being Protestants. However, they joined James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose during the Scottish Civil War during the 1640s. Originally named Freuchie Castle, it was renamed in 1694 to Castle Grant when the grounds were made into the regality of the Grant.
The eighth laird, Ludovick Grant supported the Hanoverians against the Stewarts. In doing this, he fought against the Jacobite’s in the Jacobite rising of 1715 and the Jacobite rising of 1745. During this time, the castle was occupied by the Jacobite’s. In 1787, Robert Burns visited the castle.
Later life at Castle Grant
In 1912, the castle was restored by Sir Robert Lorimer. It later became derelict. However, in 2006, it was once again purchased for £720,000 by businessman Craig Whyte. After Whyte, who had led Rangers F.C. into its administration and liquidation in 2012, refused to make mortgage payments, Castle Grant was seized by the bank.
The current day
In 2014, Castle Grant was purchased by ex-CEO of the Russian Author Society, Sergey Fedotov, who paid £1million. He was later arrested for fraud. He still owns the castle to this day after serving six months in prison for a £3.6million property fraud committed while head of the Russian Authors’ Society.
Castle Grant Timeline
- 15th century Castle Grant is built in its popular Z-plan
- 15th century- The castle passed to the Grants and it soon becomes their stronghold
- 1640s- The Grants join James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose during the Scottish Civil War
- 1694- Originally named Freuchie Castle, it was renamed to Castle Grant when the grounds were made into the regality of the Grant
- 1787- Robert Burns visits Castle Grant
- 1912- The castle is restored by Sir Robert Lorimer
- 2006- The castle is once again purchased for £720,000 by businessman Craig Whyte until being seized by the bank
- 2014- Castle Grant is purchased by ex-CEO of the Russian Author Society, Sergey Fedotov who paid £1million
Castle Grant facts
- The castle was originally called Freuchie Castle, Freuchie meaning ‘Heathery Place’
- The castle was renamed Castle Grant in 1694
- In 1787 Robert Burns visited Castle Grant as part of his travels around Scotland
- Castle Grant has had many owners in its life
- The castle is a Category A listed building
Who owns Castle Grant?
In 2014, after changing hands many times, Castle Grant was purchased by ex-CEO of the Russian Author Society, Sergey Fedotov, who paid £1million for it. He was later arrested for fraud. He still owns the castle to this day after serving six months in prison for a £3.6million property fraud committed while head of the Russian Authors’ Society.
Due to being privately owned, the castle is no longer open to the public. It is still possible to view the outside of the castle from a track that runs through what was the Castle Grant estate to the north of Grantown-on-Spey. Nearby, you can visit Grantown Museum, Anagach Woods, Tormore Distillery, and Craggan Outdoors.