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The Chatelaine's Scottish Castles

Dunure Castle

Ayrshire

Birthplace of the Scottish Kennedies! It is believed that this family, once the most powerful in all South-west Scotland, largely stemmed from John Kennedy of Dunure who flourished between 1346 and 1383. A Gilbert MacKenedi witnessed a charter of the River Doon fishings during the reign of William the Lion (1165-1214), being the earliest recorded Kennedy in Carrick.

The castle as seen today is of 15th and 16th century construction. It was here in 1570 that Gilbert Kennedy, 4th Earl of Cassillis brought the kidnapped Commendator of Crossraguel Abbey, Alan Stewart, and had him roasted over a fire to make him sign away the abbey lands to the earl. He was rescued by the Laird of Bargany who arrived at Dunure with a strong force.

Seven years earlier, Mary, Queen of Scots visited Dunure. Then the castle would have been surrounded by parks and gardens. The only surviving outbuilding is a rare, beehive-shaped dovecot.

Located about 5 miles north-west of Maybole in Ayrshire. Nearby is the interesting ruin of Baltersan tower house.

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