Dunguaire Castle in Kinvarra, County Galway, Ireland

Sep 5, 2013 by

indexdun ghuairecastleDunguaire Castle (Irish: Dún Guaire) is a 16th-century tower house on the southeastern shore of Galway Bay in County Galway, Ireland, near Kinvara (or Kinvarra). The name derives from the Dun of King Guaire, the legendary king of Connacht. Today, the castle’s 75-foot tower and its defensive wall have been restored to excellent condition, and the grounds are open to tourists during the summer. It is thought to be the most photographed castle in Ireland.

One of the principal towerhouses of the Ó hEidhin (O Hynes) clan, the castle was built in 1520,the site marks the royal palace of Guaire Aidne mac Colmain, the legendary king of Connacht and progenitor of the Hynes clan since the 7th century. As with most Irish tower houses of the time, defenses include a curtain wall, machicolations over doors, a murder hole, and parapet.  Archeologists believe the original dun was most likely a ring fort, the remains of which can be found on the small promontory just to the northeast of the current castle.

The castle was transferred to the Martin family in the 17th century, who let it fall into disrepair.  In 1924,  surgeon and poet Oliver St. John Gogarty purchased Dunguaire.  Gogarty began restoring the castle and established it as the meeting place for the leading figures of the Celtic Revival, such as W.B. Yeats, George Bernard Shaw, Augusta, Lady Gregory, and John Millington Synge.

Today, the castle is owned by Shannon Heritage, who have opened it to the public, from April-October, with medieval banquets at the castle in the evenings. It is a beautiful spot on the Galway coast, and it is well worth the drive to see the ancient home of the legendary Kings of Connacht.

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Penrhyn Castle

Jun 2, 2013 by

Penrhyn Castle – Gwynedd – Wales

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May 1, 2013 by

Kelburn Castle is a large house near Fairlie, North Ayrshire, Scotland. It is the seat of the Earl of Glasgow(Boyle family). Originally built in the thirteenth century (the original keep forms the core of the house) it was remodelled in the sixteenth century. In 1700 the first Earl made further extensions to the house in a manner not unlike a French château which is virtually how it appears today. In 1977 the house and grounds opened to the public as a country park. It is one of the oldest castles in Scotland and has been continuously inhabited by the same family for longer than any other. 

In 2007 experts told the owners of Kelburn Castle that its concrete facing would eventually need to be replaced to avoid further damage to the stonework. At the suggestion of his children, Lord Glasgow invited four Brazilian graffiti artists to paint the walls. Historic Scotland agreed to the project, on the basis that the graffiti would be removed when the castle was re-harled. The project was featured on the BBC television programme The Culture Show. Also in 2007, Kelburn featured in another BBC programme, Crisis at the Castle which documented the financial problems of running the castle.

BBC article about the graffiti project:

“The work at Kelburn Castle, in Largs, which was painted by Brazilian street artists, had been named as one of the world’s best examples of urban art. But it is to come down after engineers discovered that the cement coating on which it is painted was causing damage to the original castle walls.

Castle owner The Earl of Glasgow had wanted the graffiti to stay.

The mural features a psychedelic series of interwoven cartoons depicting surreal urban culture. It was completed by Brazilian graffiti artists in 2007 at a cost of £20,000. The mural was permitted by North Ayrshire Council on the understanding that it was temporary.  A three-year limit was put on the graffiti, pending the start of work to replace the harling render on the exterior of the turret.But the owner had been fighting to keep the mural for longer.

The castle is located in the grounds of Kelburn Estate, which also houses a country centre open to the public and featuring a series of outdoor attractions.

Last year, the mural was named as one of the world’s top 10 examples of street art by author and designer Tristan Manco – on a par with Banksy’s work in Los Angeles and the Favela Morro Da Providencia in Rio de Janeiro.

The Earl of Glasgow, Patrick Boyle, whose family has been in Kelburn Castle for 800 years, was said to be devastated that he would have to remove the graffiti.”

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-18571937

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Apr 15, 2013 by

Pennard Castle is a ruined 12th century castle, west of the village of Pennard in the Gower Peninsula, in south Wales.

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Apr 3, 2013 by

Dolwyddelan Castle, Wales by PhotoToasty

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Apr 2, 2013 by

Gylen Castle, on the southern part of the island of Kerrera in Argyll and Bute, sits on the tip of a promontory overlooking the Firth of Lorne. Gylen was built around 1582-1587 in the time of Dougall, the 15th chief, by Duncan MacDougall, who was either the brother or the son of the chief. It was certainly constructed as a fortified residence. On a nearly impregnable sea-cliff site, it was designed to make use of the best defensive strategies of its time. It has heavy walls, guarded entrances, gun loops, gun ports, and observation outlooks on all sides. Its design was not entirely utilitarian, however. Many very interesting features such as a crowstep gables, corbeled cornices, Romanesque carvings and sculptures of faces and figures, and dogtooth carving around oriel windows all testify to care of design and craftsmanship. The descendants of Duncan were able to use and enjoy the protection of Gylen for barely 60 years. In 1647, a detachment of the army of the Covenanters(a Scottish Presbyterian movement that was anti-Catholic, and anti-Episcopalian) captured and burned the castle, and slaughtered all who resided and defended therein. In addition to the loss of life and property was the disappearance of a great family treasure, the Brooch of Lorn, which had been captured by the MacDougalls from Robert the Bruce in 1306 at the Battle of Dalrigh. It was hidden until 1819 when it was found in a chest after the death of Major Campbell of Bragleen. A document confirmed that it had been taken from Gylen Castle by the Campbells, and it was returned to the MacDougall chiefs in 1824 by General Duncan Campbell of Lochnell. Queen Victoria viewed the brooch during a visit with the MacDougall clan chief in 1842. In May 2006 a restoration of the castle was completed with a £300,000 grant by Historic Scotland and £200,000 raised by worldwide members of Clan MacDougall. image: http://www.transceltic.com/115-explorecelticnations/scotlandnation/argyllandbutetrail

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Apr 1, 2013 by

Trim Castle lit green for St. Patrick’s Day with the crescent moon setting in the south west.

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