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Encyclopedia > Hillsborough Castle
The official entrance of Hillsborough Castle
The official entrance of Hillsborough Castle

Hillsborough Castle in County Down is a mansion in Northern Ireland.It is the official residence of Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom in Northern Ireland, but the regular occupant is the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland. It is also used by other members of the British Royal Family when they visit the province, and by prominent international visitors. It has been an official royal residence since the 1920s. Not a great image, but the best I could do. ... Not a great image, but the best I could do. ... County Down, (An Dún in Irish) is one of the six counties of Northern Ireland, covering an area of 2,448 km² (945 square miles). ... Northern Ireland is one of four constituent parts of the United Kingdom. ... Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II (Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor), styled HM The Queen (born 21 April 1926) is the Queen regnant and head of state of Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Canada, Grenada, Jamaica, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent... The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland is the British cabinet minister who has responsibility for the government of Northern Ireland. ... Members of the Royal Family on the balcony of Buckingham Palace after the Trooping the Colour ceremony The British Royal Family is a group of people closely related to the British monarch. ...


It is also the residence of the British monarch's official representative in Northern Ireland. From 1921 to 1972 the official representative of the sovereign was the Governor of Northern Ireland. That post was abolished in 1973. Since 1973 the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, the British cabinet minister for Northern Ireland, has also served as the Queen's representative, and as such he or she resides in Hillsborough Castle. A monarch is a type of ruler or head of state. ... 1921 was a common year starting on Saturday (see link for calendar). ... 1972 was a leap year that started on a Saturday. ... The Governor of Northern Ireland was the Crown representative in Northern Ireland. ... The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland is the British cabinet minister who has responsibility for the government of Northern Ireland. ...

Contents


Origins

Hillsborough Castle is not a true castle. It is a Georgian mansion built in the 18th century for the Hill family, Marquesses of Downshire, who owned it until 1922 when the sixth marquis sold the mansion and its grounds to the British government. By buying it the government solved a practical problem. Under the Government of Ireland Act, 1920 a new state called Northern Ireland had been created. Executive authority had been vested for both Northern Ireland and Southern Ireland in the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, who was supposed to be one of two all-Ireland features (along with the Council of Ireland) in the new home rule structure. However that office was abolished in a law change following the Anglo-Irish Treaty of 1921, which in effect abolished Southern Ireland (which had in reality only existed on paper) and replaced it with the Irish Free State. A new theoretical chief executive office for Northern Ireland alone was created to fill the void, that of Governor of Northern Ireland. But the unexpected necessity of creating an office in Northern Ireland, rather than use the Lord Lieutenant in the Viceregal Lodge in Dublin, necessitated the creation of an official residence. Hillsborough Castle, though outside the capital, Belfast, was deemed a suitable location. After some renovations, the first Governor, James Albert Edward Hamilton, 3rd Duke of Abercorn, moved in in 1925. The Alcázar of Segovia, Spain A castle (from the Latin castellum, diminutive of castra, a military camp, in turn the plural of castrum or watchpost), is a fort, a camp and the logical development of a fortified enclosure. ... The Marquess of Downshire is a marquess in the Peerage of Ireland. ... An Act to Provide for the Better Government of Ireland, more usually the Government of Ireland Act, 1920 (this is its official short title; the formal citation is 10 & 11 Geo. ... Southern Ireland was the twenty-six county Irish state created in the Government of Ireland Act 1920. ... Official standard of the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland The Lord Lieutenant of Ireland (also known as the Viceroy or in the Middle Ages as the Lord Deputy) was the head of the Kingdom of Englands (before the Act of Union 1707) or Kingdom of Great Britains (after 1707... The Council of Ireland may refer to one of two councils, one proposed and one implemented for a brief period. ... Signature page of the Anglo-Irish Treaty The Anglo-Irish Treaty was a treaty between the British government and the Irish Republic which brought the Anglo-Irish War to an end and established the Irish Free State. ... 1921 was a common year starting on Saturday (see link for calendar). ... The Irish Free State (Irish: Saorstát Éireann) was (1922–1937) the name of the state comprising the 26 of Irelands 32 counties which were separated from the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland under the Irish Free State Agreement (or Anglo-Irish Treaty) signed by British and Irish... Áras an Uachtaráin is the official residence of the President of Ireland, located in the Phoenix Park on the Northside of Dublin1. ... Dublin (Irish: Baile Átha Cliath1),is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Ireland, located2 near the midpoint of Irelands east coast, at the mouth of the River Liffey and at the centre of the Dublin region3. ... Belfast (Béal Feirste in Irish) is the largest city in and capital of both Northern Ireland and Ulster, and the second largest city on the island of Ireland. ... James Albert Edward Hamilton, 3rd Duke of Abercorn (November 30, 1869 - September 12, 1953) was a British Unionist politician and nobleman who became the first Governor of Northern Ireland. ... 1925 was a common year starting on Thursday (link will take you to calendar). ...


Secretary of State

Following the decision to abolish the majority rule Stormont system of government, all old Northern Ireland governmental posts, including that of governor and of Prime Minister of Northern Ireland, were abolished. Those two posts were in effect combined to create the office of Secretary of State for Northern Ireland. As the Queen's representative the Secretary of State resides in Hillsborough Castle, though members of the Royal Family, when visiting Northern Ireland, stay there also. The Prime Minister of Northern Ireland was the head of the Government of Northern Ireland, appointed by the Governor of Northern Ireland under the Government of Ireland Act 1920. ...


Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh stayed in Hillsborough Castle during their visit to Northern Ireland as part of the Golden Jubilee tour of the United Kingdom in 2002. HRH The Duke of Edinburgh His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh (Philip Mountbatten), styled HRH The Duke of Edinburgh (born June 10, 1921), is the consort of Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. ... 2002 is a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


Anglo-Irish Agreement

Hillsborough Castle became the controversial location of the signing of the Anglo-Irish Agreement in 1985. Irish Taoiseach (prime minister) Garret FitzGerald believed that signing the Agreement in Hillsborough Castle would mollify unionist opposition the Agreement somewhat. However many unionists took offence at the signing of the Agreement in the Throne Room of the Castle, it igniting their opposition further. The Anglo-Irish Agreement was an agreement between the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland which aimed to bring an end to the Troubles in Northern Ireland. ... 1985 is a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Taoiseach (plural: Taoisigh) or, more formally, An Taoiseach, is the head of government of the Republic of Ireland and the leader of the Irish cabinet1. ... Dr. Garret FitzGerald (Irish: Gearóid MacGearailt) (born February 9, 1926) was the seventh Taoiseach of the Republic of Ireland, serving two terms in office; July 1981 to February 1982, and December 1982 to March 1987. ... In the Irish context, Unionists form a group of largely (though not exclusively) Protestant people in Ireland, of all social classes, who wish to see the continuation of the 1801 Act of Union, as amended by the Government of Ireland Act 1920, under which the Northern Ireland provincial state created...


Political talks

Guests leaving Hillsborough Castle to walk through its grounds.
Guests leaving Hillsborough Castle to walk through its grounds.

Many of the crucial talks leading up to the signing of the Belfast Agreement took place in the secretariat attached to the Castle. Leaders such as Gerry Adams (Sinn Féin), John Hume (SDLP), David Trimble (UUP) and on occasion the Rev Ian Paisley met secretaries of state to discuss sensitive political and constitutional issues. Not a great photo. ... Not a great photo. ... The Belfast Agreement (also known as the Good Friday Agreement and, more rarely, as the Stormont Agreement) was a major step in the Northern Ireland peace process. ... Gerry Adams Gerry Adams (Irish name Gearóid Mac Ádhaimh; born October 6, 1948) is an Irish politician, Member of Parliament for West Belfast, and president of Sinn Féin. ... The name Sinn Féin (pronounced in English, in Irish), which means ourselves or we ourselves (not as sometimes incorrectly translated, ourselves alone or we alone) has been applied to a series of political movements since 1905 in Ireland, each of which claim or claimed sole descent from the original... John Hume - Wikipedia /**/ @import /skins-1. ... The Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP — Irish: Páirtí Sóisialta Daonlathach an Lucht Oibre) is the smaller of the two major nationalist parties in Northern Ireland. ... The Right Honourable David Trimble (born October 15, 1944) is a Northern Ireland politician, leader of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP), former First Minister of Northern Ireland, MP and MLA. He shared the 1998 Nobel Peace Prize with John Hume of the Social Democratic and Labour Party. ... Predicted properties Name, Symbol, Number ununpentium, Uup, 115 Chemical series presumably poor metals Group, Period, Block 15, 7 , p Appearance unknown Atomic weight [288] amu (a guess) Electron configuration [Rn] 5f14 6d10 7s27p3 (a guess based upon bismuth) e-s per energy level 2, 8, 18, 32, 32, 18, 5... The Reverend Ian Richard Kyle Paisley (born April 6, 1926) is a politician and church leader in Northern Ireland. ...


Breaking new ground

Hillsborough Castle broke new ground for a royal residence when then Secretary of State Peter Mandelson, with royal agreement, lived openly with his gay partner as a couple in the residence during Mandelson's period in office. Some media reports critical of Mandelson's sexuality had speculated that he might decide to live elsewhere during his period in Northern Ireland, and simply use Hillsborough Castle as an office. Others speculated that his partner would not live with him at all in Northern Ireland but would continue to reside in London. The Rt Hon. ... Although the word gay originally meant happy, in modern usage the term is often applied interchangeably with homosexual. However, there are important differences between the terms: while homosexual relates specifically to sexuality, the term gay is a political or social marker. ...


His precedessor, Mo Mowlam, broke her own new ground when she became the first Secretary of State to open up the extensive grounds of the castle to the public. Previous Secretaries of State had not done so because of the fear of Provisional IRA attack. The security impact on the Castle can be seen (top photo) in the presence of bullet-proof glass in plastic frames in front of the georgian windows at the public front of the building. The Right Honourable Marjorie Mo Mowlam (born September 18, 1949) is a British politician and served as a Labour MP. She was born in Watford but grew up in Coventry, attending the Coundon Court Comprehensive school, and then studied at the Universities of Durham and Iowa. ... The Provisional Irish Republican Army (PIRA) is a paramilitary group which aimed, through the use of violence, to achieve three goals: (i) British withdrawal from Ireland, (ii) the political unification of Ireland through the merger of Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland , and (iii) the creation of an all...


Prominent visitors

Apart from members of the Royal Family and politicians from Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and the United Kingdom some international figures have visited or stayed at the Castle. The most prominent was the President of the United States George W. Bush in 2003. Seal of the President of the United States The President of the United States is the head of state of the United States. ... George Walker Bush (born July 6, 1946) is a politician and currently the 43rd President of the United States. ... 2003 is a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ...

 
State buildings in Northern Ireland

Stormont Parliament Building | Hillsborough Castle |
Stormont Castle | Stormont House| This is northern irelands flag File links The following pages link to this file: England England national football team FA Cup Greater London Luton Town F.C. Northern Ireland Scotland United Kingdom Aston Villa F.C. The Football Association West Ham United F.C. Regions of England East of England... The Parliament Building of Northern Ireland, also known as Stormont, for the Stormont area of Belfast, served as the seat of the Parliament of Northern Ireland. ... Stormont Castle is now the official residence of the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and was previously the location of the Cabinet Room of the Government of Northern Ireland from 1921-1972. ... Stormont House served as the official residence of the Speaker of the House of Commons of Northern Ireland between 1921 and 1972. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Hillsborough Castle - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (844 words)
Hillsborough Castle is the official residence of Queen Elizabeth II in Northern Ireland.
Hillsborough Castle, which is located in County Down, is not a true castle.
Hillsborough Castle broke new ground for a royal residence when then Secretary of State Peter Mandelson, with royal agreement, lived openly with his gay partner as a couple in the residence during Mandelson's period in office.
Northern Ireland Office // About the NIO / Virtual Tour (292 words)
Hillsborough Castle then became the official residence of the Governor of Northern Ireland.
Members of the Royal family are regular visitors to Hillsborough Castle, the highlights being the visits of Her Majesty the Queen and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh on the occasion of both the Silver and Golden Jubilee celebrations.
Hillsborough Castle is open to the public for a limited time each year and has become a popular tourist attraction, with both guided tours of the house, and walks in the gardens, proving popular with visitors.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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