The ruins of Ballinglen Castle are situated in a Valley on the West side of the Ballinglen River in Ballycastle, North Mayo. Most of the Structure is now covered with ivy. Several large Corner Stones also quite a lot of masonry has been removed. It was a Norman Castle erected circa. 1500 A D two miles south of Ballycastle. There was an Altar Room that included an altar. The ruins today have thick Walls at the Base. A hidden Passage was exposed due to the collapse of the Roof & the North wall.
A description in the 1943 ‘Survey of Antiquities’ stated that within the townland of Ballinglen Castle are the Ruins of an old Norman Castle. It was believed that the Castle was erected by the Barratt’s. In later years it was seized by the Bourke’s.
The Ruins could be seen far back of the river to the right – hand side of the road when one was about two miles from Ballycastle. A road to the right led to the Farmhouses near the Castle. The thick Stone Walls of the Castle are about five feet in height also it was thirty squares in width. The walls at that time were visibly crumbling. There was the usual complement of Secret Passages, but no trace remains. A Stone Staircase led upwards in the initial Building: this is now impassable beyond the first Story.
During that time frame the Lands on which the Ruins of the Castle stood were owned by Mr. Sean Purcell. He provided permission to visitors to explore the Area. [i]
This site features several images of the Castle Ruins. [ii]
One may view an abridged version of Ballycastle at this link. [iii]
There is a beautiful image of the Castle Ruins on this Facebook page. One may phone Noel on 086 3828713 for a personal guided tour of the site: https://www.facebook.com/215516035611060/photos/a.215651975597466.1073741828.215516035611060/234582603704403/
[iii] History of Ballycastle (http://www.ballycastle.ie/History%20of%20Ballycastle.htm) [assessed 1st July 2020]