Traditional Irish Name

Baile Ibricin/Baile Bhricín – Bricin’s town.

Associated Families



Civil ParishCaherelly.
OS Map RefSheet 23.


Ballybricken was a c.16th century stronghold. It was held at different times by three important Clanwilliam families. It is often referred to historically as Ballybricken Court or Old Court.

In its original state, Ballybricken Castle was a square structure, four storeys high, with walls 50 feet high. In 1840, local people still referred to it as ‘Old Court’.1

Interesting architectural features: the arched doorway is still extant, as is part of the vault over the first-floor chamber.


This once fine castle (see archival photo in Image Gallery) is today an overgrown ruin. It was was judged ‘unsafe’ in the 1960s, and the upper-floors were brought down by explosives.2


The castle ruin is on private land. Permission is required.

Historical Timeline

1540:Ballybricken held by Richard Burke.
1583:Property of Donnell O’Heyne.
1584-1603:O’Heyne family of Ballybricken are granted several royal pardons.
1640:The castle (surrounded by a bawn wall) and lands are the estate of Conor Clancy of Ballybricken.
1656:Clancy is transplanted to Connacht and his estate is seized by the Cromwellian Parliament.
1657:Castle and lands granted to George Ingoldsby, a major in the Parliamentary army (and also related to Oliver Cromwell).
1666:Ingoldsby confirmed in Ballybricken estate by Charles II following the Act of Settlement.
1689:King James’s Parliament charges Richard Ingoldsby of Ballybricken Castle – a supporter of the Protestant William of Orange – with high reason.


1 Ordnance Survey Letters, Caherelly parish, 349.
C.J. Donnelly, ‘Tower Houses of Co. Limerick’ in R. Stalley (ed.), Limerick and South-West Ireland … (2011), 199.


All historical information is compiled from archival material; primary sources (such as State Papers); secondary sources; plus authoritative digital sources (such as CELT). Any direct quote or a further reading suggestion is footnoted.

For queries, suggested amendments, or other relevant information, or if you would like to contribute an archival image of Ballybricken Castle (of which you own the copyright), please leave a comment at the bottom of the page, or email (below).


Image Gallery

Castle location on map

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