The castle that inspired the novel Dracula is to be turned into holiday apartments, but locals are branding it a huge mi-“stake”.

Local councillors in Aberdeenshire may well be advised to hand garlic around their offices after approving a scheme to turn 16th century Slains Castle, which inspired Bram Stoker to write his gothic masterpiece Dracula, into holiday flats.

The cliffs on which the castle stands outside Cruden Bay are in danger of collapse, but local residents are adamant that the ruins should be left as they are, to provide a more genuine vampiric experience than any themed resort could.

At a public meeting held last week, before the council made its decision, one resident warned that the plans would “drive a stake” through the building’s historic charm.