Historic Royal Palaces announces major leadership grant for Hillsborough Castle

Historic Royal Palaces announces major leadership grant for Hillsborough Castle

Hillsborough Castle South Portico

27 November 2014
Hillsborough Castle South Portico

Historic Royal Palaces is pleased to announce its largest leadership grant of £1 million dedicated to Hillsborough Castle in Northern Ireland.  This gift has been generously made by Mr. Mark Pigott KBE.  The donation is a “challenge grant” that will match pledges and gifts on a 1:1 basis, to a maximum of £1 million, until the end of 2016.

Mr. Pigott KBE shared, “It is an honour and a privilege for my family to be involved with the renovation of Hillsborough Castle, a historically important royal estate.  Historic Royal Palaces’ vision for the site is imaginative and inspiring.  It would be wonderful if many people and organisations joined together in supporting this noble undertaking.”

Charles Mackay CBE, Chairman of Historic Royal Palaces (HRP) said, “We are delighted that Mr. Pigott has made this substantial leadership gift which will significantly contribute towards our exciting programme for Hillsborough Castle.  Mr. Pigott has been very generous on other important HRP programmes, including the transformation of Kensington Palace and the renovations to the Chapel of St Peter ad Vincula at the Tower of London. We are confident that many other supporters will be inspired by his family’s generosity.”

Michael Day, Chief Executive of Historic Royal Palaces, said. “Our aim is to develop the Hillsborough Castle site in order to enable everyone to explore the important historical role it has played and to make the castle and its gardens widely accessible for future generations to share and enjoy.” 

Historic Royal Palaces assumed the management of Hillsborough Castle in April 2014.  This project will also produce significant benefits for the Northern Ireland economy, bringing investment and creating new jobs.

Hillsborough Castle was built in the late 18th century by Wills Hill, First Marquis of Downshire, and was the principal seat in Ireland of the Marquesses of Downshire for over 100 years until it passed into public ownership in the 1920s.  It remains the official royal residence of Her Majesty The Queen in Northern Ireland and residence for the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland.

Mark Pigott KBE is executive chairman of PACCAR Inc (www.paccar.com), a Fortune 200 global technology company based in Bellevue, Washington. The Pigott family and PACCAR have generously supported UK organisations such as Cancer Research UK, the Royal Shakespeare Company, the British Library, the Palace of Westminster, the National Theatre, the National Gallery and St. Paul’s Cathedral.

Notes for Editors

Historic Royal Palaces is the independent charity that also looks after the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, the Banqueting House, Kensington Palace and Kew Palace. It aims to help everyone explore the story of how monarchs and people have shaped society, in some of the greatest palaces ever built. 

Historic Royal Palaces raises all its own funds and depends on the support of its visitors, members, donors, sponsors and volunteers.  Registered charity number 1068852. For more information visit www.hrp.org.uk.

Hillsborough Castle is currently open for guided tours on selected days from April to September.

For visitor information including ticket prices, please visit www.hrp.org.uk/aboutus/whoweare/hillsborough-castle/visitor-information

For further information please contact the Historic Royal Palaces press office: 020 3166 6166 or press@hrp.org.uk 


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