Castle Fete with the Campbells, Part I

Castle Fete with the Campbells, Part I

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Belfast Castle, North Belfast






01min 01sec




black and white


Campbell Family Collection


Campbell family, Fiona Campbell Hicks

Rights Holder

Fiona Campbell Hicks

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Join John Dermot Campbell, friends and family at a garden fete hosted by the Shaftesbury family in the grounds of Belfast Castle. See children dancing in groups on the lawn of the Scottish Baronial style mansion. A great variety of fancy dresses are on display including Highland dress and Dutch costume with a bonnet. A wide shot towards the end of the reel allows for a full view of the impressive tower and crowds flowing through the Belfast Castle grounds.

The film was probably shot by John Dermot Campbell and it is part of the Campbell Family Collection.  


Belfast Castle, a 19th Century Scottish Baronial style mansion, sits in a prominent position near Cavehill. The castle was passed, via marriage, to the Shaftesbury family and in 1894 the 9th Earl of Shaftesbury added an Italian-style serpentine staircase as a gift to his mother, the Dowager Countess.

The Shaftesbury family was very generous donor to Belfast, supporting many charities and hosting garden fêtes such as the one in this clip, in the castle grounds. The ninth Earl became Lord Mayor of Belfast in 1907 and chancellor of Queen's University in 1908. The Shaftesbury family presented the castle and its estates to the Belfast Corporation in 1934. During the Second World War it served as a base for the Royal Navy Admiralty. The slopes of Cave Hill were also used as a refuge by local families during the blitz.


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