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The Chatelaine's Scottish Castles

Threave Castle & Gardens

Kirkcudbrightshire

Once the stronghold of the Black Douglases, and now owned by Historic Scotland, Threave Castle sits on an island in the River Dee.

Located three miles west of Castle Douglas in south-west Scotland, this tower (21 metres / 70 feet high) was built by the 3rd Earl of Douglas (Archibald the Grim) between 1369 and 1390. The outer wall which encloses it was rebuilt around 1455 when James II laid siege to Threave and captured it. Three years earlier, the 8th Earl hung a man from the gallows knob which you can still see over the main doorway. It has lain in ruins since 1640 when the Covenanters seized it after a 13-week siege. It was also used to house French prisoners during the Napoleonic Wars.

The name Threave has changed over the centuries from Thrave, Trief and Thrieve. It is thought to derive from the old Welsh word for homestead.

In the care of Historic Scotland. Due to maintenance, check for 2013 opening times on 07711 223 101.

Nearby Threave House is also open to the public. It is owned by the National Trust for Scotland which has its School of Practical Gardening here.
Facilities available for Weddings.

Self catering accommodation is on the Threave estate available - visit the National Trust of Scotland holiday accommodation web site for details.

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