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The Medieval Period (1100AD - 1499AD)


Castle Island, Loch Doon

Loch Doon or Balloch Castle is an eleven-sided curtain-walled castle designed to defend its original island site at the southern end of Loch Doon as shown in this image.

In the 1930s the level of the Loch was raised in connection with the Galloway Hydro-electric scheme. The castle itself would have become submerged had the outer shell of the castle not been dismantled and re-built about 1935 on the shore near Craigmulloch Farm, where it can still be seen today. When the level of the Loch is very low it is possible to se the top of the island where it was originally sited with some of the remaining stones of the Castle.

The original castle dates from the 13th or 14th centuries. The stonework is renowned for its beautifully hewn blocks of ashlar which have stood the test of time. It is believed that portcullis gates, which protected the castle, still lie submerged after being thrown into the loch during an attack on the castle.

It is thought that Loch Doon Castle gave shelter to Robert the Bruce and later to his friend Lord Seton as he fled the battlefield of Methven. The castle was later owned by the Kennedy family and was taken from them by William Crauford of Lefnoris in 1511. The castle was destroyed in the reign of James V (1513 - 1542) to prevent its falling into his enemies' hands.

Prior to the raising of water level in the 1930s, the loch had been artificially engineered as earlier, when the Earl of Cassillis and McAdam of Craigengillan drove tunnels under the Loch to reduce the level of the water by about 14 feet in order to gain agricultural land.
Place of Production:
Loch Doon, East Ayrshire
infra red glass plate
Dean Castle
Accession number:
Digital Number:
Creation Date:
East Ayrshire Council