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Castle Roche Castle
 

County

Louth

Coordinates

N 54° 02' 47.1"   W 006° 29' 16.9"

Nearest town

Dundalk

Grid Ref.

H 99090 11855

Map No.

36

Elevation a.s.l. (m)

73

Date of visit

Friday 30 May 2014

GPS Accuracy (m)

3
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The castle sat on the rocky outcrop.


The first time we came here was on May 4th, 2002. I remember that it was a wonderful and hot sunny day and that a group of teenagers were doing some free climbing on the inner walls of the castle. I also remember that the views from up here were breathtaking, possibly rivalling with the views from Rock of Dunamase.
This time the weather was dull and cold.
The castle was built by Lady Rohesia de Verdun, from the family who founded Dundalk, in the 1236, but much of the structure that we see today was added by her son John, who died in 1274.
Because of the site chosen for the building, the castle has a triangular plan, the entrance is on the east (90°) side protected by two tall D-shaped towers with arrow loops. The east side of the castle is also protected by a ditch cut in the rock, the other two sides are naturally protected by the steep cliffs of the hill.
The inner area is unevenly levelled, the northwest side is much lower than the east side. At the south end of the courtyard there was the great hall of the castle. At the north corner there was the cellar, with a vaulted ceiling.
A young raven was hidden in the grass of the great hall area. It had probably fallen from its nest. I hope it survived.


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