Athenry Castle, Athenry

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Athenry Castle is a tower house and National Monument located in Athenry, Ireland.
Athenry Castle is located off Court Lane in the east part of Athenry, on the west bank of the River Clarin. It is sited on a natural rise and defended the ford.
Despite being locally known as King John's Castle or King John's Court (after the Lord of Ireland 1177–1216), it wasn't built until twenty years after his reign.
The original keep (constructed 1235/40) was low and squat, the roof being at the level of the present second floor. Meyler de Bermingham extended it c. 1250. In 1316 the castle was attacked, leading to the construction of city walls. In the 15th century the Berminghams moved from it to their town house near the market cross in the square. In 1596 the castle fell into the hands of the O'Donnells.
The battlements are 13th century and in the 15th century, these parapets were incorporated into gables for a new roof.
The castle was restored in 2005.
Athenry Castle is a large rectangular building with base-batter, originally containing only a hall on the upper level and storerooms at ground level. The battlements are 13th century with tall arrowslits in the merlons. In the 15th century, these parapets were incorporated into gables at the north and south ends for a new roof. Parts of the original enclosure wall of the castle survive.
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113 reviews
  • Adjacent to the center of the notable medieval walled Town of Athenry and built about 1250. Movie provides the castle's significance in Irish history. Ruins of the Athenry Dominican priory are within....  more »
  • Visited here recently and it’s a lot larger then I expected! Visited on the last day of the season (seasonal site) and the OPW have done a very good job on the restoration of this castle. The...  more »
  • Great place, very friendly and well informed staff. Well worth a visit. Good value for money
  • Lovely visit to a very interesting heritage site. We were extremely fortunate to meet a very knowledgeable tour guide who was very passionate about history.
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