In a world where the new, modern, and current are displacing the ancient, historic, and priceless, we appreciate the surviving abandoned romantic ruins even more. You’re probably aware of our modest fixation with magnificent chateaus, those huge castles that stand lonely and abandoned, left to the mercy of nature, and we know that most of you share our sentiments. Miranda Castle is one of these magnificent ruins, the amazing 19th Century neo-Gothic castle in Celles, province of Namur, Belgium, the gorgeous chateau that has charmed us from the first snapshot we saw of her years ago.
The castle was erected in 1866 by the English architect Edward Milner on request from the Liedekerke-De Beaufort family, who had fled their former residence, Vêves Castle, during the French Revolution. Milner, however, died before the castle was built. The clock tower was added in 1907.
Their ancestors were occupied until World War II. A section of the Battle of the Bulge was fought on the land, and the castle was seized by the Nazis during the time.
Miranda Castle was renamed “Château de Noisy” in 1950 after being taken up by the National Railway Company of Belgium (NMBS/SNCB) as an orphanage and vacation camp for ailing children. It operated as a summer camp for youngsters until the late 1970s.
Because the costs of maintaining the castle were too high, and a search for investors in the property failed, the castle has been vacant and fully abandoned since 1991. Although the town of Celles offered to take it over, the family declined, and the massive structure is now (as of 2015) abandoned, succumbing to corrosion and vandalism. A fire severely damaged parts of the building, and numerous pieces of the ceiling are collapsing.
Kenneth Provost of Urbex Photography, who lives in the same county as the collapsing monument and shares our enthusiasm for this beautiful castle, alerted us that the threat of dismantling Noisy Chateau is extremely real.
Although there is no news in English about the castle being demolished, Provost translated a French item that clearly mentions the castle would be razed.
A demolition permission was in the possession of the building’s owner, Liedekerke Beaufort County, beginning in July 2015. ‘I was really astonished when I found out about this,’ says Alain Maes of the Aresno Association, which works to preserve Noisy Castle. The news has gone completely disregarded… Houyet College has adopted the advice of the official Walloon Region delegate appointed to investigate the case. “In problems like as security, we took the viewpoint that one should take from the case.” Remember that it is private and non-public property, and there are numerous incursions… “We have taken safeguards,” says Mayor Yvan Petit (PS). The Castle is in ruins and poses a serious threat to anybody who enters illegally. For this reason, the owner began the demolition process two years ago.
“We’ve taken safeguards,” Mayor Yvan Petit adds (PS). The Castle has fallen into ruins and poses a serious threat to anybody who enters illegally. This is why the owner began the demolition process two years ago.
However, the costs of restoring it are exorbitant: the price is believed to be between 15 and 25 million euros. ASBL subsequently began seeking private investors who were willing to renovate the property into a hotel restaurant, for example. However, no meaningful plan was reportedly able to be presented to the County two years later. The castle is currently better protected by the Walloon Region. As a result, the owner canthe ability to demolish the structure. However, demolition work has not yet begun, and we can only hope that someone will do something to save and preserve this exquisite gem in the meanwhile.