Castle Friends - Charleville Castle Volunteer Site

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Welcome to Castle Friends - Volunteer Portal for Charleville Castle!

Explorers Museum Film Festival 2015

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Join us for the second annual Explorers Museum Film Festival at beautiful Charleville Castle in picturesque Tullamore, Ireland, just a one-hour drive west of Dublin. Our theme this year is "Explorer Canada" featuring five new films showcasing the beauty of Canada's nature and people.  For tickets, CLICK HERE

Film Fest


As part of Charleville Castle’s celebration of the 2nd Explorers Museum Film Festival, we will be hosting a Star Party at Charleville Castle on Saturday the 5th of September. Our good friends in Republic of Astronomy and KTEC Telescopes will be present on the night to help point out the constellations and planets to you. It is a family friendly event from 8pm until late. There will be a brief discussion before observing the night sky. Entry is just €5 per person and this includes one burger or hotdog on the night. We may even have a surprise guest or two! If you purchase a ticket for the Film Festival (Highly Recommended), this will also cover entry to the Star Party.
A small amount of telescopes will be available for anyone who doesn't have a telescope. If you have your own scope or binoculars please bring them along. Please dress for night time.  CLICK HERE

Castle night poster 2


Volunteering from Abroad

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Here at Charleville Castle, we embrace culture and really enjoy having an international pool of friends where we can celebrate each others cultures and learn from each other.  

If you are considering coming to volunteer in Charleville Castle and you are coming from a country outside the EU, there may be some Visa requirements.  

Please take the time to look below to see what might be required.

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Visa requirements for entering Ireland



King Henry VIII Unique Review

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There is a special reason why this great masterpiece was hung in Charleville castle for 200 years. This reason remains lost to us. We found the trail that leads to that secret explanation but have not so far found incontestable proof. The masterpiece of King Henry the 8th at the baptism of the future Queen Elizabeth the 1st is one that can not be forgotten.  

As the years passed by, the castle was unfortunately subjected to various acts of vandalism and Charleville Castle slowly became a derelict castle.  But as luck would have it, when the year 1970 came around, a gentleman by the name of Graham Gordon found his way into castle and upon entering, came across the masterpiece of King Henry the 8th.  

Already feeling sypmathy for the condition of the castle, Gordon was determined to save the painting, and after correspondence with the castle's current owner, he was granted permisson to remove the painting.

Gordon had his own views from when he first came across the painting, and we at Charleville Castle have been fortunate enough to have direct quotes of Gordon describing the painting:

David Hicks the author of a book that is being published by Collins Press in September 2012 and features Charleville Forest Castle visited the castle in October 2011 and spoke to Dudley Stewart and shared his research with him about the Boydell painting fully restored at the Beaverbrook Museum in Canada.

This was excellent and more information on David's book can be found at

King Henry Painting Value


  • Shakespeare's play, KING HENRY VIII, is accepted amongst most scholars as his last play. It is generally thought to be written in 1612 and perhaps partially written by John Fletcher. It was performing at the Globe theatre when the theatre burned down in 1613. 
  • The Peters rendering of Henry VIII, Act V, Scene 4, is the most transforming historical moment of all the Shakespeare's plays. For the actual portrait of Henry, Peters used the Holbein original life portrait of Henry, so the likeness is remarkably accurate.. 
  • It represents the last Scene in the last Act of the play. The climax. A towering moment when the infant Elizabeth is recognized and baptized.  She is Henry’s daughter and to become the future famous Elizabeth, Queen of England, in that time so well known now as the "Elizabethan Age". 
  • The painting depicts the Archbishop of Canterbury at a hugely important time when Henry VIII was in conflict with Rome over the issues of divorce and was casting away Roman Catholic power from Britain. 
  • Archbishop Cranmer and The Lord Mayor of London are there along with the Duke of Norfolk with his Marshal’s staff, the Duke and Duchess of Suffolk , the Marchioness of Dorset, God Mothers and Aldermen. 
  • It represents more than any other painting of the Boydell Shakespeare the core purpose of Alderman Boydell's mission . . . to establish a School of Historical Painting and advance the art towards maturity. 
  • None of the other Shakespeare plays of the historic Kings of England come close to the monumental changes wrought by Henry VIII. Henry stands alone as that towering monarch widely known and written of through history down until today when the TV series "The Tudors" shines further light and huge interest onto this powerful and demanding King, quite above and beyond the other Henrys or Richards of British history. This Act of this Play is that pivotal moment of British history like no other. 
  • The Peters Henry VIII, Act V, scene 4, is about the largest of all the Boydell Shakespeare paintings. 
  • Its value cannot be judged simply as a 'Peters" painting. It is a unique Boydell Shakespeare painting in the light of its monumental historical relevance.

Gordon's viewpoint on the masterpiece brings such a unique vision, we can only hope it will inspire others to take part in our goal of bringing King Henry the 8th back to Charleville Castle!

Our appearance on RTÉ!


Peters Painting Rebirth Project

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Here is a picture from 1970 showing Peters Painting hanging in the dining room

Dining Room 1970 with Painting exGordon2


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