Feb 19 2013 By Cheryl Mullin
HIGHCLERE Castle is best known as the set of hit period drama Downton Abbey.
But the aristocratic Carnarvon family who live at the Berkshire country house are hoping to attract visitors for a different reason.
Ninety years ago, in the Valley of the Kings, the 5th Earl of Carnarvon and Howard Carter broke down the gold wall into the Shrine Room in the tomb of Tutankhamun, discovering a wall of gold.
To mark the anniversary of that achievement a visitor attraction has been created in the cellars of Highclere Castle to give an impression of what was found in November 1922.
The Egyptian Exhibition contains replicas from the tombs, including the pharaoh’s middle coffin and his death mask.
At the exhibition’s launch, the Countess of Carnarvon said: “This is the defining thing for Highclere. Downton is lovely, but it will come and go.”
She went on: “The discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb is the greatest archaeological discovery ever.
“I want people to feel they’re inside the tomb and they have a sense of history.”