Kilcash Castle is a ruined castle off the N24 road just west of Ballydine in South Tipperary, Ireland. The castle consists of a fortified sixteenth-century tower and an adjoining hall added at a later date.
I have visited this Castle many times over the years, however in more resent months it has been under renovations by the OPW (Office of public works). All the images in this post were taken before this work started.
I noticed last week however that the work is about to complete and I hope to revisit in order to take some new images, when the castle reopens to the public.
Kilcash castle : History
Kilcash may have been a monastic foundation of the mid sixth century. The Butler dynasty has important links to the area. The third son of James Butler, 9th Earl of Ormond was John Butler of Kilcash who occupied lands in Kilcash. His heirs went on to provide four immediate heirs to the earldom of Ormond when the senior line failed through lack of legitimate male issue.
Near the castle are the remains of a medieval church with a Romanesque doorway. This building was partially repaired in the 1980s and is now safe to visit. In the graveyard, the mausoleum (a building nearly as large as the church) contains the tombs of Archbishop Christopher Butler (1673–1757), Margaret, Viscountess Iveagh (see below), Walter Butler, the 16th Earl of Ormond (d. 1773) and John Butler, the 17th Earl (d. 1795). Some of the eighteenth-century headstones are carved with elaborate scenes of the crucifixion.
The main castle building is a fortified tower dating from the sixteenth-century. An adjoining hall was added at a later date, when the need for defence gave way to the large windows associated with settled times. In the sixteenth century the manor of Kilcash passed from the Wall family into the possession of the Butlers of Ormond until the latter sold it to the Irish State in 1997 for £500.
The castle was visited by James Tuchet, 3rd Earl of Castlehaven, a noted Confederate Catholic commander in the 1641-52 war, who wrote his memoirs at Kilcash where his sister, Lady Frances, was married to another Confederate commander, Richard Butler of Kilcash (d. 1701).
By the 19th century, the castle had fallen into ruin after parts of the Kilcash estate were sold c. 1800. During the Irish Civil War, the castle was occupied by anti-treaty forces in an attempt to slow the approach of pro-treaty forces towards Clonmel. They were finally dislodged by artillery fire under the command of General Prout, further damaging the already dilapidated structure.
By the late twentieth century the castle was in a dangerous state of repair. It is currently undergoing extensive repairs which will prevent it from collapsing.
Kilcash Castle : Gallery
your free range chickens
by : James Jarrett
I often thought about you
And your free range chickens
Being happy on the land
Living life free
Both pecking and scraping
Getting life from the dust
But I didn’t know
That it could never be enough
Tho’ scratch might make some happy
I found out too late
That it wouldn’t do for you
But if I could
Believe me true
I’d bring you chickens
Instead of flowers
To brighten up your room