Merlin Park Castle is one of many Castles which were in the Parish of Castlegar, Galway, before it contracted or expanded into new parishes.

Supposed to a tower of Charles Blake; this is still a fine example of stonework / craftsmanship. You'd imagine that they are larger in dimension, but seem to favour height for view advantage and depth for security. At 97 feet, there was little to obstruct the vista, covering Galway Bay and westwards to the City. Eastward, would have been good too, with limitations to the North. See Elevation for comparison.

Coordinates for Merlin Park Castle; latitude; 53.279810 and longitude of -8.997854

Elevation; 97 feet or 29.565 metres.

This building is said to have a (Sheela na Gig - See Wikipedia in a new window) carving above one of its windows, and on the inside. It doesn't exactly look a Sheela ná Gig though, so someone will have to verify this? As this building is padlocked shut, we don't have access. Incidentally, there is only one visible door on the ground floor - on the South Facing side, where you see the markings of an extension long gone.

With the image below, do we see masonry support for a roof, since ravaged?

Merlin Park Castle

Looking South. Behind the trees is the Merlin Park Hospital grounds.

Access to this Castle, is probably easiest at 53.279171 and longitude of -8.999372 (flash earth map of these access by car coordinates ) which is at the end run of a housing estate having some parking provision (South West end of "Coillte Mhuirlinne"). Aim for the Church at Castlepark (aka Ballybane) and turn due South. This access location is also marked on the map of collective Castlegar Castles.

castle

Above, is facing North

merlin park castle with windows

another view of the castle

and this a top view from the East.

rear of the castle

Above, is the South facing facade. Beneath it, are the ruins of a visible extension and the tracing of a "V-shaped" roof. To the left of the picture, you may notice the contrasting form of a modern conurbation. We don't know yet, whether this extension was part of the original structure, but it probably wasn't. A lentil is visible over the square-form doorway arch on the first floor, though, suggesting otherwise. We'll see.

merlin park castle

Clear too, are the narrow and vertical slits for observation - of enough size to look out, and not enough for much to get in.

at night

^ Courtesy of https://www.facebook.com/MickBourkePhotography