Monday, 20 February 2017

Kiltimon Castle Co Wicklow

                                     Above Image: One of the four bartizans

                                   Above Image: The walled garden enclosure

This picturesque castle with its decorative bartizans is located in a circular walled garden of Dunran Demesne on a back road South of Newtownmountkennedy.  It has long been the subject of speculation as to the authenticity of its age.
Originally Kiltimon Castle was a three storey Norman tower built circa 1550. It was later occupied by the O'Byrnes a powerful Irish clan prominent in Wicklow but was lost to them with their lands during the Cromwellian invasion in the 1600's. A print by Gabriel Beranger (1725-1817) from 1750 shows the castle in complete ruin. It is from here that the unsurety begins. In 1781 the Estate was owned by General Robert Gun Cunningham (1726-1801) who went about a large renovation of the house and lands and in doing so built this present castle as a garden folly. It was thought that this was at a different location to the original Kiltimon Castle but an investigation revealed that some inner sections were actually of medieval date so in fact he had the folly built up from the ruins of the original castle. It is somewhat ironic that the folly that is purporting to be a ruin is in fact a ruin that is now a fol!y! 
When I visited I had hoped to get closer but the large gates of Dunran remain squarely locked. I could see plainly over the wall a pathway leading from the drive leading down to the gate of the circular walled garden. The roadside wall is one of those distinct types devilishly built with pointed capstones designed to make access difficult, and I have to say it does its job well. I would hope to return again and see if access is allowed by the owners, in the meantime it is still worth a visit if in the area especially as it is in close proximity to both Newcastle Castle and Old Killadreenan Church (see earlier posts here & here )
To find the ruin head South on the M11 Dublin to Wexford motorway and exit at Junction 13 for Newcastle. The exit loops round to a small roundabout. Take the left hand exit signposted for the R772 to Newtownmountkennedy. Follow the road for approx 400m until you reach a T-Junction (you will pass the ruins of Killadreenan Church on your right). Turn left at the junction and drive for approx 1.4KM until you reach signs saying "No Through Road Local Access Only" with a small road slanting off to the right. Turn right onto the small road and drive for approx 850m until you see the castle jutting above the wall on your right. It is narrow along here but I managed to park a little down from the castle location. It's not a busy road so you should be okay for a short visit. 


  1. I enjoy your posts, but there are a couple of things that you could do to improve things.

    Sometimes you say "see earlier posts". It would be much easier for us readers if you could include a link to those posts, as they would be easier for you to find, since you know your work better than a reader would.

    Also, having a public google map with all the locations would be a great resource for us to help decide if we can visit other places nearby when we go to one place.

    1. Thanks Sokratees9 for your suggestions. sounds good to me I'll certainly look into this. Thanks for checking out the blog