Saturday 25 May 2019

'When I was six I tried to catch a Rolling Stones balloon from the castle roof and almost killed myself' - Lord Henry Mountcharles' children recall childhoods at Slane

24/09/2018 - (L to R) Tamara Mountcharles, Lord Henry Mountcharles & Alex Mountcharles at the announcement that Metallica have been confirmed to headline Slane Castle next summer 8 June 2019. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
24/09/2018 - (L to R) Tamara Mountcharles, Lord Henry Mountcharles & Alex Mountcharles at the announcement that Metallica have been confirmed to headline Slane Castle next summer 8 June 2019. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
Rock 'n' roll kids: Henry Mountcharles (left), his elder son Alex and younger daughter Tamara at the ancestral home, Slane Castle
Aoife Kelly

Aoife Kelly

Lord Henry Mountcharles' son Alex and daughter Tamara have recalled their most memorable moments from concerts held at their home, Slane Castle.

The family has been hosting music concerts at the Co Meath venue since Thin Lizzy graced the stage in 1981 and both Alex and Tamara joined their father at Slane Castle on Monday to announce that Metallica would play June 8 2019.

Alex (43) recalls the that first gig when he was just six years old but has clearer memories of the following year when The Rolling Stones played on July 24.

He said that the children were listening to the band upstairs in their bedrooms and added, "I remember jumping up and down on the bed singing, 'I can't get no satisfaction!'"

Mick Jagger at the 2007 Stones gig in Slane Castle. They had first played in 1982. Photo: Steve Humphreys
Mick Jagger at the 2007 Stones gig in Slane Castle. They had first played in 1982. Photo: Steve Humphreys

At the end of the gig balloons were released into the sky and Alex wanted to catch one so he made his way to the roof of the castle.

"I nearly killed myself in the process," he said, adding that his uncle and his sister caught him.  "But I did get one!"

ROBBIE WILLIAMS IN SLANE in 1999
ROBBIE WILLIAMS IN SLANE in 1999

He added, "I was very disappointed - there was an after party and I remember being upstairs with my mum and we didn't want to go to sleep.  We eventually passed out and dad kept going for a couple of days after that."

For Tamara (27) her most vivid memories are of Robbie Williams, who initially supported The Verve on August 29, 1998 before returning to headline Slane the following year.

80,000 people showed up in 2003 to see the Red Hot Chili Peppers headline. Photo: Kyran O'Brien
80,000 people showed up in 2003 to see the Red Hot Chili Peppers headline. Photo: Kyran O'Brien
Crowds at Slane for Red Hot Chilli Peppers in 2003.

She recalls playing football with him and watching him rehearse with her friend.

"We knew every single word and he pretended to forget some of the lyrics and called upon us for our moment to shine which was pretty special," she said, adding that the Red Hot Chili Peppers, who played in 2003 was another highlight.

24/09/2018 (L to R) Tamara Mountcharles, Lord Henry Mountcharles & Alex Mountcharles at the announcement that Metallica have been confirmed to headline Slane Castle next summer 8 June 2019. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
24/09/2018 (L to R) Tamara Mountcharles, Lord Henry Mountcharles & Alex Mountcharles at the announcement that Metallica have been confirmed to headline Slane Castle next summer 8 June 2019. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins

However, she said the biggest thing for her is that it "has always been a family affair, even more so when we were growing up.

"I remember Alex being on the gate checking tickets and I was a bit of a runner, everyone made me do important things, and me and my best friend used to run the bar at the after show parties as well, which was an interesting experience from a young age!"

She added, "It has always been an incredible experience.  It always punctuated our years - it's always been Christmas and Slane.  A year without Slane always feels a bit empty so we're really excited to have one next year."

Slane is not usually an annual event.  Since the Red Hot Chili Peppers played in 2003 it has taken place every second year so while while Guns N' Roses played in 2017 - selling out 80,000 tickets in a day - there was no concert this summer. 

Alex also revealed that the next generation will also be making memories at Slane as his six-year-old nephew Sean is a "huge Metallica fan".  He said, "He knows all the words.  His favourite song is Sandman.  It's going to be great craic watching him this year."

Tickets from €89.50 for Slane go on sale Friday, September 28 at 10am.

Read more: Confirmed: Metallica to play at Slane 2019

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