Belvelly Castle

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Belvelly Castle

Belvelly Castle is a 14th[1] or 15th-century[2] tower house in County Cork. It is situated next to the small village of Belvelly, opposite and overlooking the only road bridge connecting Fota Island to Great Island (on which the town of Cobh is situated).

The castle was originally built by and for the Anglo-Norman Hodnett family,[1] but was taken by the De la Roch (Roche) and De Barra (Barry) families in the 14th-century.[3] The Hodnetts later however leased-back their lands. Some sources suggest that Walter Raleigh occupied the castle in the 16th-century,[4] before being reoccupied by the De Barra family, and used by Roger Boyle, 1st Earl of Orrery to garrison troops during the Irish Confederate Wars in the mid-17th century.

By the 19th century the castle had fallen into ruin. During World War I, the castle received an increase in visitors when local coachmen brought sailors docked at nearby Queenstown (Cobh) to the castle - reputedly under the impression that they were actually visiting Blarney Castle and its Blarney Stone.[5] The castle was occupied and somewhat modified by the Irish Army during the Emergency (1939-1945).[6]

The castle was sold in the early 21st century and,[7] as of mid-2016, is undergoing restoration following the granting of planning permission for use as a private dwelling.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Nathaniel Parker Willis; Joseph Stirling Coyne (1842). The Scenery and Antiquities of Ireland (volume 2). George Virtue. 
  2. ^ "Castles are for keeps". Irish Examiner. 19 July 2008. Retrieved 26 May 2014. 
  3. ^ Tom Barry. "Where the Rock of Tuathail towers o’er each breast - A Short History of Carrigtwohill". Retrieved 26 May 2014. 
  4. ^ James Coleman (1915). "The Old Castles Around Cork Harbour". Journal of the Cork Historical and Archaeological Society. Cork Historical and Archaeological Society. XXI: 106. 
  5. ^ Séamus Kelly (Quidnunc) (27 November 1928). "A Counterfeit Castle". An Irishman’s Diary. Irish Times. During the war [WWI] Queenstown [...] was constantly crowded with sailors on “shore leave”. Cork City was out of bounds, and [...] Blarney Castle proper [...] too long a journey [...] so the enterprising jarveys of the district evolved a scheme which brought [...] dozens to see the [Belvelly] Castle and kiss the "Stone" 
  6. ^ "Castles in Ireland - Belvelly Castle". Castles.nl. Retrieved 26 May 2014. 
  7. ^ "SOLD - Belvelly Castle, Cobh, County Cork". Premier Properties Ireland. Archived from the original on 7 July 2016. 
  8. ^ "Planning Application Details - Number 156565 - Belvelly Castle Cobh". Cork County Council. Retrieved 4 September 2016. Restoration of and alterations to a ruined tower house, including reconstruction of battlements and slate roof for use as dwelling house, to include a separate garage and boiler room, a new boundary wall, new vehicle entrance and a proprietary sewage treatment system and all associated site works 

See also[edit]

Coordinates: 51°53′17″N 8°18′09″W / 51.8881°N 8.3024°W / 51.8881; -8.3024