Discover the magical world of science at Hillsborough Castle
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As part of this year’s festival, Hillsborough Castle will be playing host to a number of events for all ages.
Discover how you, the universe and everything in between behaves. Enjoy a wide range of talks, tours and workshops, from the science of compost to behind-the-scenes conservation and so much more at Hillsborough Castle and Gardens.
Indulge in an evening of drink and drugs at Hillsborough Castle on Friday February 16.
For thousands of years people have partaken of a variety of mind altering substances from tobacco to alcohol, through to laudanum and cocaine.
This will be a fun evening of discussion and expert insight into legal highs through the ages with live music and complimentary drinks.
The format of this event is a little different to the regular talks programme at Hillsborough Castle and Gardens.
On arrival, you will be welcomed with a drink in the State Entrance. Take your seat in the Throne Room and watch Kyron Bourke and band perform a selection of drink and drugs themed jazz and pop/rock standards.
Be informed and entertained by three expert guest speakers and, after the final speaker, enjoy a final round of drinks as Kyron plays the evening out.
Guest speakers include Professor Sharon Haughey (QUB). This interactive session will concentrate on alcohol and opium consumption (including laudanum), which was widespread in the mid-19th century. Learn how people consumed these drugs in the past and how they acted upon the body.
Trevor Dawson will discuss the process of making mead and the history behind possibly the world’s oldest alcoholic drink still in use in modern times, including Metheglin (Mulled Mead) made with honey and spices, which was very popular with Queen Elizabeth I. You can also enjoy a selection of mead to sample.
Dr Kathryn Harkup, a former chemist and now crime fiction expert, will conclude the evening with some intriguing stories of poisons and famous fatalities.
On Saturday February 17, families can enjoy a fun workshop and find out about early Victorian optical illusions by making your own thaumatrope, or ‘wonder turner’ to take home and amaze your friends. There will be several workshops throughout the day starting at 10.30am and admission is free with a gardens ticket.
Anyone with green fingers can find out all they need to know at the Beginner’s Guide to the Science of Compost.
This workshop will be held on February 15 and 22 at 11am and 1.30pm.
Hillsborough Castle’s expert gardeners will show you how they make compost, and how to get the carbon and nitrogen ratio just right. Learn what can be composted and how to tell when it is ready to use.
As well as a guided walk through the Walled Garden, you will also visit behind-the-scenes areas such as the compost yard and the gardeners' operating base.
On February 20-21, visitors can also enjoy a behind the scenes conservation tour of Hillsborough Castle.
Discover how Historic Royal Palaces painstakingly conserve and preserve furniture, paintings, silverware and clocks for display in the impressive State Rooms of Hillsborough Castle.