|This image is the copyright of Andrew
Spratt who has generously given permission to display them here.
rather odd looking castle originally sat on an island on Loch Doon and
must have been almost impossible to besiege. Not because of its strong
walls but because of its position on such a deep wide Loch. No causeway
could be built out to it to convey siege towers. No land based mangonels
or trebuchets (giant catapults which hurled rocks and fireballs) could
hope to reach its walls. So all assaults would have to be by boat ,a very
besieged it was in 1306,when Sir Christopher Seton, a follower and
brother-in-law of King Robert the Bruce (1306-1329) ,fled here after the
defeat of Bruce at the battle of Methven. The castle was held by the
hereditary Governor Sir Gilbert de Carrick, who fearing Bruce to be a lost
cause surrendered to the English without even trying to fight. Sir
Christopher was taken prisoner to Dumfries and hanged as a traitor, while
Sir Gilbert escaped with his life.
1446 Loch Doon was again besieged and eventually surrendered to a force
sent by William 8th Earl of Douglas,
whose power in the region was clashing with that of the infamous Kennedies.
However, in this instance the castle appears to have been seized by the
Maclellans of Dumfries who opposed the Douglas attempts to gain control of
Carrick. By 1510 Loch Doon was in Kennedy hands when it was besieged a
third time by William Crawford of Lochmores.
reconstruction shows the castle as it may have been in 1306 with a simple
enclosing wall, its unusual shape being dictated by the rocky island.
Later an oblong towerhouse was added possibly in the early 1500's. But
this suffered destruction during the reign of King James V (1513-1542) of
Scots when he chose to destroy his Lords castles to keep them in
subjection to his royal authority.