6 things you didn't know about the Scottish estate where BBC drama Ordeal by Innocence was filmed

The BBC adaptation of Agatha Christie's Ordeal by Innocence recently introduced viewers to the wealthy Argyle family and unveils the series of events behind the murder of foster mother Rachel, over the three-part drama.

With the second installment - which aired on Sunday night - leaving viewers further perplexed as to whodunnit, we find out more about the sprawling estate where the drama unfolds.

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The location may surprise you

Picture: Ardgowan Estate Facebook

Despite being set in England, the Argyle family home is actually Ardgowan Estate, located in the west of Scotland.

And, when you think of a Scottish country estate, you wouldn't necessarily picture Greenock. But this is the closest town to the Ardgowan Estate.

Shots of the estate during the BBC drama give the impression of the Highlands, with the rolling hills, mist, sprawling land and what looks like a nearby loch.

But, in reality, Glasgow is only about an hour's drive away and the estate sits on the banks of the River Clyde.

There are links to America, Robert the Bruce and Pocahontas

Picture: Ardgowan Estate Facebook

King Robert the Bruce fought here prior to Bannockburn, and his descendant King Robert III granted the estate lands to his ancestor Sir John Stewart in 1404.

In 1819 another ancestor, Sir Michael Shaw Stewart (the 5th Baronet) married Eliza Farquhar, a direct descendant of Native American Princess Pocahontas, one of the most significant figures in the early colonial history of America.

In another American link, the estate witnessed a series of infamous witch trials in the 17th centuries, which were comparable to those at Salem.

It has had some royal visitors...and a dubious distinction

Picture: Ardgowan Estate Facebook

In the early 20th century Lady Alice Shaw Stewart had a number of interesting guests passed through the house - from artists and prime ministers to members of the Royal family.

While the family have always lived in the house, it was used as a military hospital during both world wars. As described on the estate's website this was a not without its dangers.

"Following an abortive raid on Greenock in August 1941, the Luftwaffe dropped a stick of bombs in the field next to the house.

"Fortunately there were no casualties but many of the windows were blown in, earning Ardgowan the dubious distinction of being the first Scottish Hospital to be damaged by German bombs."

You can help restore the estate to its former glory

Picture: Sir Ludovic 'Ludo' Shaw-Stewart, the 12th baronet and owner of Ardgowan Estate. Picture: Ardgowan Distillery Company/PA Wire

If the drama of the Argyle family has you intrigued by the estate and you have a bit of free time, then why not become an Ardgowan volunteer?

There are a few ongoing projects that will help with the estate's restoration, and anyone who gives up their time will automatically gain entry to the 1797 Club.

This Club gives members access and entry to exclusive events, which include talks, teas and tours. There's also a range of discounts available to members.

There are plans for a whisky distillery

Picture: How the new distillery will look. Illustration: Ardgowan Distillery Project

Lat year Inverclyde Council approved plans for a whisky distillery and visitor centre on the estate.

Ardgowan Distillery Company can now advance its proposal to build a “world-class” lowland malt whisky distillery and visitor attraction on the site, with plans to be operational in 2019.

Sir Ludovic “Ludo” Shaw-Stewart, the 12th baronet and owner of Ardgowan Estate, said: “The lands around the estate have been occupied nearly continuously for over 4,000 years and the history of my family at Ardgowan stretches back over 600 years. In that time, Ardgowan has played its part in the story of Scotland.

“The Ardgowan Distillery will be a fantastic new chapter in the history of this area, and all future drams will have these extraordinary bloodlines - from both Scotland and the United States - in their veins.”

Work on the distillery will see construction on the site of an old sawmill.

The Ardgowan Distillery appointed former Macallan managing director Willie Phillips as company chairman, and ex-Bruichladdich and Diageo veterans Gordon Wright and Michael Egan in commercial and product engineering advisory roles.

You can get married there

Picture: Ardgowan Estate Facebook

If you fancying having your big day in the famous 18th century house (with hopefully less drama), then you're in luck as it is available for exclusive-use hire.

As a licensed venue, all types of ceremonies - from religious, civil and humanist through to vow reaffirmations and naming ceremonies - can be conducted at Ardgowan Estate.

As well as all this, there are a range of events held at the estate throughout the year. For more information on these and the estate, please visit the Ardgowan website.