Powderham Castle: PR and media relations

The Client

Powderham Castle is a popular visitor attraction, which includes guided tours of the castle, themed events during the school holidays and a deer park safari. The castle also plays host to a number of high profile events, the most recent of which was Radio 1’s Big Weekend.

The Challenge

Powderham Castle was on the lookout for a PR agency who could hit the ground running and support their in-house marketing team.

Chalk & Ward PR were tasked with splitting their time between PR for Charlie and AJ Courtenay, the Earl and Countess of Devon, and PR for the castle, supporting the visitor attraction and wedding sides of the business.

During this time, Powderham Castle were announced as the hosts of the Radio 1 Big Weekend 2016, the biggest free ticketed music event in Europe. This was the first time the popular festival had ventured to the South West, resulting in fervent interest both regionally and nationally, with a host of press opportunities and activities to arrange.

The Result

Chalk & Ward PR spent time getting to know how Powderham Castle works, what drives them and how they wanted to grow and develop. We developed a strong understanding of their key messages and how they wanted to position both the family and the castle, which helped us identify the right coverage for the right audiences.

Working closely with Charlie and AJ, we created a core messaging strategy for the Castle, arranged specialist media training and worked closely with different members of Powderham Castle’s team to plan wider marketing and PR strategies.

We arranged a series of high-profile press opportunities, including a double-page spread in Devon Life, interview on BBC Spotlight and ITV West Country and volumes of regional coverage on all of the visitor attraction events at Powderham Castle. On top of this, we supported the Castle’s PR during the Big Weekend, including a significant presence at the Radio One Academy.

One of the key successes of the PR campaign was a 6-page article in The Times Magazine, which also made the front page of The Times newspaper. Our support resulted in consistent coverage and press activity throughout the season, boosting the profile of Charlie and AJ and Powderham Castle as a visitor attraction destination.

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