EASTNOR Castle has won national recognition for a restoration project that has helped to preserve its masonry for future generations.

The castle was announced as a winner of the Georgian Group Award for the Restoration of a Georgian Country House, shared jointly with Boconnoc House in Cornwall, at a ceremony in London.

The award was presented by Richard Chartres, Lord Bishop of London, and received by James Hervey- Bathurst on behalf of Eastnor Castle Estates Company and Ledbury-based architect, Ian Stainburn, now of Caroe Partners, who has been advising on the restoration of Eastnor for the last 25 years.

Mr Hervey-Bathurst said: “We are delighted to have received this award. The restoration work has largely been possible as a result of grants we have received from English Heritage and the Country Houses Foundation, the business we have been able to generate for the castle and park and the hard work of our staff and contractors.

“Our visitor numbers were up by 18 per cent his year, and I hope Eastnor can continue to be a popular tourist attraction. Being so close to Ledbury is a great advantage as visitors enjoy visiting the town as well.”

Mr Stainburn said: “I have enjoyed working at Eastnor and dealing with the many challenges a building of that size and complexity.”

Although the castle appears to be a mediaeval fortress, Eastnor Castle was built between 1812 and 1820.