What Would I’m a Celebrity’s Gwrych Castle Cost in 2020? | Checkatrade
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I’m a Celebrity’s Gwrych Castle cost
by
Checkatrade

If you love seeing celebrities squirm, you’ve probably been waiting with bated breath for ‘I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!’ to re-grace our screens. But in a strange turn of events (let’s be honest, was anyone really expecting a pandemic to take over 2020?!), this year’s celebrities won’t be abandoned in the Australian Outback. Instead, they’ll be shacked up much closer to home, in Wales’ Gwrych Castle.

This 200-year-old castle was left asset-stripped, vandalised and abandoned from around the 1990s, with its future uncertain. We’re talking empty shells, spooky interiors, gothic turrets… it may be thousands of miles from the Australian outback but we think it’ll make for the perfect nail-biting ‘I’m a Celeb’ setting. Plus, it’s a whole lot easier to disinfect a castle for celebrities’ safety than it is to disinfect the outback!

We’ve taken a look at how much it would cost a Checkatrade professional to recreate some aspects of Gwrych Castle in 2020.

Cost provided itemUnitRange - lowRange - highAverage cost
New staircasePer staircase£1,200£3,000
(could increase to £50,000)
£2,100
HandrailPer linear metre£50£150£100
Lime renderingPer m2£60£70£65
Window restorationPer window--£1,000
Standard portable toiletper 2 weeks--£50
Disabled portable toiletPer week--£100
Hot wash portable toiletPer week--£120

The grand staircase

Gwrych Castle’s grand ‘marble’ staircase definitely has the wow-factor. It was installed by the Countess of Dundonald in 1914 and features a surprising material. Although it has marble on the treads either side of the central section and as a dado rail to the sides, the base is actually made of concrete, as advised by the architect Detmar Blow.

So, how much would you expect to pay for it? To get a new staircase installed, you’ll be looking at a minimum cost of £800 for the supply and a further £400 for the fitting. But you could easily end up paying over £50,000 for a really grand staircase like this. And that’s not to mention the handrail, which could cost between £50 and £150 per linear metre for a standard one or a lot more for something grander.

Lime plastering

Lime rendering and plastering tends to be much more expensive than standard cement rendering and plastering. It’s a traditional and specialist craft and the process takes a lot longer – more coats have to be applied and left to dry.

We’d recommend budgeting between £60 and £70 per m2 for the job. However, when you’re budgeting for a huge space like Gwrych Castle, these costs can quickly add up.

Cast iron windows

When it comes to iron or steel windows, one of the most serious issues you’ll come across is rust. As the metal frames rust, they expand and distort, which can end up cracking the glass itself. You’d probably want to budget around £1,000 per window to get them repaired, but this could vary depending on their size and the extent of the repairs needed.

Even if windows look like they’re beyond repair, they can often still be restored. In fact, restoring a window is usually a lot cheaper than replacing one altogether, even if there’s a lot of work to be done.

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Outside toilet Gwrych Castle turret

To recreate the gruelling ‘I’m a Celebrity’ atmosphere, the producers have fitted an outdoor toilet for the contestants. The new Castle Privvy may be a far cry from the heat of the dunny in Queensland Austalia, but baring your bottom in the bleak Wales winter presents a whole new set of challenges!

To hire a standard portable toilet, you’re looking at around £50 for two weeks. However, this can climb to £100 per week for a disabled toilet or £120 per week for a hot wash one. That’s not including any delivery charges though, which can be as high as £100 each way for disabled and hot wash toilets.

Key takeaways

  • Lime rendering and plastering is a traditional and specialist craft.
  • Steel windows can rust and eventually cause the glass to crack.
  • It’s usually more cost-effective to restore a window than it is to replace it altogether.
  • Portable toilets range in cost depending on their size and facilities.

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