One of Scotland’s most famous gardens will not reopen until at least next spring, operators have confirmed.
Drummond Castle Gardens, near Crieff, date back to the 17th century and have been described by Historic Environment Scotland as “the best example of formal terraced gardens in Scotland”.
The grounds recently won a new legion of fans when they were transformed into the Palace of Versailles for popular time-travel drama Outlander.
But while other estates and gardens begin to reopen after more than 100 days of lockdown, the Drummond Castle team has confirmed their gates will stay shut for the time being.
A spokesman said: “It is with regret that we have taken the extremely difficult decision not to reopen Drummond Castle Gardens to the public this year.
“We know this will come as a disappointment to our visitors and staff, but due to the ongoing effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, we feel this is the right option to take.”
He said: “The safety of our team, our visitors and our suppliers is of paramount importance to us.”
Essential maintenance work will continue while the gardens are shut, and some stonework will be restored.
The spokesman added: “We will look forward to opening the gardens again in the spring of 2021, if circumstances permit.”
Last year, the gardens welcomed back a centuries-old sundial after two years of painstaking restoration.
Designed and created by John Drummond, the second Earl of Perth, and John Mylne, Master Mason to the Scottish Crown, the sundial forms a focal point in the St Andrews-cross shaped grounds.