Narrow Water Castle
Narrow Water Castle lies on the bank of the Clanrye River (also known as the Newry River), north of the town of Warrenpoint, in County Down, in Northern Ireland.
The first castle at this site was a keep built by the Norman knight Hugh de Lacy, the first Earl of Ulster, in 1212 as part of the Norman fortifications built in the area, like Carlingford Castle and Green Castle.
The present castle was built in the 1560's for an English garrison to guard the narrow point where the river meets Carlingford Lough. Narrow Water Castle is a typical example of the tower houses erected throughout Ireland from the 14th until the early 17th century. The castle is rectangular in plan and 3 storeys high with an attic, and has stairs, closets and latrines skillfully contrived within the walls. It is unique in that it has relatively rare straight, instead of spiral, stairs in its walls.
By 1580 Hugh Magennis, Chief of the Mournes, held the castle. In 1596 the castle was retaken by the English but granted to Sir Arthur Magennis on condition that the English could use it if they needed it. In 1641 during the Irish Rebellion Narrow Water Castle was taken by Sir Conn Magennis, but in 1644 it was defended for the King against Parliament. In 1670 it was sold to Francis Hall and the family owned it until 1956.
Between 1744 and 1819 a saltwork operated from within the bawn and in 1834 it was used as kennels. In the 19th century a new castle was built closeby. This Elizabethan Revival style castle also goes by the name of Narrow Water Castle.
In 1979 Narrow Water Castle was the site of an IRA ambush on a British army convoy on the road directly next to the castle which killed 18 soldiers.
A very nice castle on a great location, too bad it was closed when I came by. It can be visited in the summer months.