Isle of Arran, Bute

Lochranza Castle, Isle of Arran, Bute

This rather squat L-shaped Towerhouse dating to the 14th century stands on a small spit of land jutting out into Lochranza Bay on the northern end of Arran.  The town is now more of a draw for its Whisky Distillery, the newest in Scotland which is due to produce its first malt any year now.

A hunting lodge was built here by the Stewart kings, but from 1315 it became a property of the Campbells who built the Castle, in much the same form as it stands today.  The Campbells were here until 1452.  James IV used the Castle as a base in his campaign against the Lords of the Isles.

The Castle was garrisoned by Cromwell in the 1650s but saw no recorded action.  In 1705 it was sold to the Duchess of Hamilton and fell into disuse thereafter.

Today it is owned by Historic Scotland on a "key-keeper" basis and is currently undergoing restoration work.

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