Inveraray Castle was the chosen location for the Downton Abbey Christmas 2012 episode.
In a nail-biting two hour special, the Grantham family and staff travelled north to the home of their cousins, the Marquess and Marchioness of Flintshire in their mythical Scottish home, ‘Duneagle Castle’.
The drama unfolded as the Flintshire’s marriage continued to disintegrate, Lady Rose’s modern ways upset her mother, Lady Edith considered becoming the mistress of a married man, Lady Mary’s pregnancy developed, The Dowager Marchioness strolled through the gardens of the castle offering her usual direct and damning wisdom, Anna and Bates caused (unwitting) trouble ‘downstairs’, while Miss O’ Brien met her match in the Marchioness’ ladies maid. The Ghillies Ball was the highlight of the Duneagle stay when the whole household came together for a Campbell tartan bedecked evening of Scottish dancing and tensions reached their peak.
Inveraray Castle was shown at its best, with magnificent shots of the castle, gardens and surroundings. The West Highland’s spectacular hills, lochs and glens were used throughout the episode. The Scottish scenes opened with the Grantham party arriving at the castle, to be welcomed on the original front steps of the castle (gardens entrance), before going into the Armoury Hall. Dinner was held in the State Dining Room, sparkling with Argyll family silver and gold nefs. Other scenes included the Grantham and Flintshire ladies strolling in the formal gardens, target practice for stalking in the garden, a family picnic over-looking the Dhu Loch, Anna and Bates picnicking by the river, stalking scenes high in the estate grounds and salmon fishing in the river.