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Looking After the Mount
Enter the St Aubyn family
The St Aubyn family have owned property in Cornwall since the fourteenth century. At the end of the English Civil War, Colonel John St Aubyn was appointed Captain of the Mount with a remit to secure the peace in the neighbouring area. In 1659, he purchased the Mount from the previous owners for £1,900, which would have been a fair price at the time.
Several generations on, another John St Aubyn completely renovated the castle and added the four storey East Wing, in which the family live today. In 1887, he was created Lord St Levan for his services as a MP over 30 years.
In 2003, James and Mary St Aubyn moved to the castle with their four children. They, in their turn, became Lord and Lady St Levan in 2013 and still live on the island today.
The island community
Another thirty people also live on St Michael’s Mount throughout the year. At least one person in each household has a role to play in looking after the Mount and making sure that life on the island functions as smoothly as possible. Although the Mount is a very busy place at times during the season, it operates as a close-knit community, especially during the winter months.
The National Trust
In 1954, Francis St Aubyn, 3rd Lord St Levan, gave most of the island to the National Trust together with a substantial endowment fund for its upkeep. The National Trust bring their considerable expertise to help maintain the fabric of the island as well as helping look after the castle and its contents which are on view to the public.
The St Aubyn family retain a 999 year lease to live in the castle as well as running the visitor business under licence from the National Trust, welcoming you to discover their extraordinary family home.
This unique partnership supports the Mount’s vibrant community, continuing a remarkable legacy of life and activity that stretches back to prehistoric times.
Discover more whilst visiting
As you arrive at the harbour, look out for the Barge House where there is further information about the island’s history as well as how life is lived here today.
As you climb to the castle or go though its rooms, there are QR codes available for you to scan with the camera on your smartphone for more information about the area you are in and its contents.