Kilcavan Castle

Tower House

After visiting the fortified house at Coolhull I took the opportunity to view the church and tower house at nearby Kilcavan. The dramatic remains of the tower house are nestled in the south west corner of a farmyard. The landowner kindly gave me permission to enter the yard. Very few of the original features of the castle remain. There was no evidence of an entrance, stairs or even a garderobe. But at the northeast corner there are some excellent quoins. The only visible light, see bottom of page, was in the east wall.

Henry Fitzhenry possessed Kilcavan for one knight's fee in 1247 from the Bigod estate. The earliest reference to the castle dates from 1607, when the castle was in the possession of Thomas Fitzhenry. The Act for the Settlement of Ireland 1652 provided for the confiscation and re-distribution of the lands of the defeated Irish, mostly Confederate Catholics, who had opposed Cromwell and supported the royalists, during the Cromwellian Wars. According to a civil survey in 1655/56 a Thomas Fitzharris owned over 11 hundred acres in Kicavan Parish. In 1656 Fitzharris was awarded 300 acres in Connaught. Kilcavan parish church is situated 400 metres south of the tower house.

Situated: From Wellington Bridge drive east for 5.3 kilometres. Take a right turn signed Ballymitty. The tower house is 2.3 k down here on your right. Keep right at the first fork and left at the second.

Discovery Map 77: S 8787 1325. Last visit June 2016.

Longitude: 6° 42' 46" W

Latitude: 52° 15' 51" N

Google Map

Photos: Jim Dempsey.

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