Braemar Castle in Aberdeenshire was first built by the 18th Earl of Mar, John Erskine in 1628, using it as a hunting lodge and strong hold against the powerful neighbouring Farquharson family. The castle replaced the nearby Kindrochit Castle, which is said to have been built sometime in the 11th century.
In 1689, John Farquharson, the Black Colonel of Inverey, led an attack on Braemar Castle, leaving it burnt and damaged.
John Erskine, 22nd Earl of Mar, was a noted Jacobite, particularly at the time of the 1715 Rebellion. Because of his role in the uprising, the castle was confiscated by the Crown. Braemar Castle and its lands were then bought by John Farquharson, 9th Laird of Invercauld, but the castle was left in ruins until 1748 when it was leased to the Government for £14 per annum, serving as a Hanoverian garrison. The garrison was eventually withdrawn, and in 1831 the castle was returned to the Farquharsons.
Braemar Castle was renovated into a family home, which was started by the 12th Laird of Invercauld, who also entertained Queen Victoria when she visited for the Braemar Games, which were held in the grounds of the castle. The castle remained as a family home to the Farquharsons for over 100 years.
The castle is now open to the public, and is visited by people from all over the world. The Farquharsons leased Braemar Castle in 2007 to the Braemar community for 50 years, so it can continue to be open as a visitor attraction, and is ran by the charity Braemar Community Limited. The castle is in need of urgent repairs to the roof and the charity is trying to raise the money.
Doreen Wood, part of the Braemar Castle Team, kindly sent us these photos of the castle.