Accommodations: Castle Forbes offers accommodation with full or half board.
Cost: Rod fees 100 - 190 pounds p/ week depending upon season - 25 - 40 pounds p/day. "Fishermans Stay" - a special price for flyfishers only - full week lodging, all meals, drinks is 495 pounds (Suday pm -- Saturday pm) --rod fees are additional
Dates: February - October
Location: Alford, Scotland
Phone Number: Tel. 019755-62574 (Castle), 019755-62524 (office)
Species: Brown Trout & Salmon
|Castle-Forbes - Alford, Scotland
The Castle-Forbesí beats extend along three miles of the River Don on one bank and for two and a half miles on the other.
They are on the Forbes Estate (private land, no public access) and are booked individually, so you can be assured of being far from madding crowds.
We usually have a good run of salmon through the season, with good distribution of native Scottish brown trout - all natural populations, no artificial stocking.
As the estate and fishing have been in family hands for so many generations, we have conserved an unusually rich variety of Scottish native wildlife. Fishermen often report having seen many bird and animal species rare elsewhere, including red squirrels, badgers, otters and pine marten.
Castle Forbes offers accommodation with full or half board. There are preferential rates to anglers on Forbes Estate water. We provide a peaceful base from which visitors to the region can visit the Whisky Trails and Castle Trails, challenging golf courses and numerous other attractions. This area of Scotland contains a unique heritage of prehistoric monuments and a number of fascinating local museums, as well as active outdoor sporting pursuits, such as golf, shooting, skiing and fishing on the Forbes Estate. Jinny is an accomplished cook and dinners usually include fresh venison, game and salmon from the estate as well as vegetables and soft fruit from the castle garden.Meals are held in the candle-lit tartan dining room, among many of the family heirlooms and pictures that have built up over the generations.
A HISTORY OF FORBES
In that part of North-East Scotland which spreads itself from the mountain ranges of Aberdeenshire to the coasts of Banff and Buchan, lie the lands of the Clan Forbes. The great houses and estates of the Clan - once there were no fewer than 150 of them - were situated along the several winding rivers that flow eastwards and northwards through this corner of Scotland: the Dee, the Don, the Ythan, the two Ugies and the Deveron. But especially were they numerous along the valley of the Don: and overlooking the Don today stands Castle Forbes, built in 1815 by James Ochoncar, the 17th Lord Forbes. The castle is still occupied by the direct descendants of the Duncan of Forbes upon whom the original lands of Forbes were conferred in a charter dated 1271 by King Alexander III (1249-1286).
The Clan grew rapidly in size and power throughout the 14th and 15th centuries until it became the leading power in Aberdeenshire. And it was his contribution to the Earl of Mar's victory at Harlaw in 1411 over the invading hordes led by Donald of the Isles that led to Sir Alexander Forbes, son of Sir John of the Black Lip, being elevated to the peerage sometime between 1443 and July 1445 when he first took his seat in Parliament.
Since then the title has been handed down from generation to generation and on the Union Roll of 1707 Forbes was the Premier Lordship of Scotland; a position held to this day.
James Ochoncar, the 17th Lord Forbes, regarded by the current family as perhaps the most "relevant" ancestor for the building of the present Castle Forbes and planting many of the trees that still stand on Forbes Estate, was himself an officer in the Coldstream Regiment of Foot Guards for 26 years, rising to the rank of General. He served as second in command of the British Mediterranean forces in Sicily in 1808 before commanding the Cork and Eastern Districts in Ireland.
It was during his time in Ireland that the present Castle Forbes was built near Alford on the site of the old family home of Putachie. Today Castle Forbes is the home of his great-great-great grandson who provides accommodation there for visitors from all over the world.
CHIEF OF THE CLAN
The present chief of the Clan, Nigel, the 22nd Lord Forbes, lives at Balforbes on the south side of the river Don, within the 'modern' Forbes Estate.
He followed his father Atholl, the 21st Lord Forbes, into the Grenadier Guards and fought in the campaigns of France, Belgium, North Africa, Sicily and North West Europe during World War II after which he became Military Assistant to the High Commissioner for Palestine, General Sir Alan Cunningham. Like his father and many earlier holders of the title he was elected to serve as a Representative Peer for Scotland in the House of Lords and was Minister of State for Scotland in the MacMillan government of 1958/9.
Both Nigel, Lord Forbes and his son, Malcolm, Master of Forbes, attend and officiate at clan gatherings as time permits.
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