Dungiven Castle 




Dungiven Castle was the ancestral home of the O'Cahan clan who ruled the area between the 12th and 17th Century. Danny Boy, one of the most recorded melodies ever composed was originally called O'Cahan’s Lament. The original version begins with an O'Cahan bard Rory Dall O'Cahan lamenting the passing of his great Chief, Cooey na Gall O'Cahan whose death brought to an end the line of O'Cahan chiefs of Ulster. He is buried in the Old Priory just a few minutes walk from Dungiven Castle.

Finvola, Gem of the Roe, daughter of Chieftain Dermot O'Cahan, married Angus McDonald and moved to Scotland. When she died a Banshee wailed until her body was brought home to Dungiven and laid to rest. Some say even to this day the Banshee can be heard crying for Finvola in the depths of a winter night.


Dungiven Castle, in Dungiven, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland, dates back to the seventeenth century although most of the current building dates from the 1830s.

Following a mixed history, which saw it hosting housing the Us Army during , and later being used as a dance hall during the 1950s and 1960s, the castle fell into such a state of disrepair that the local council decided to demolish it. A local pressure group fought these plans and in 1989 Glenshane Community Development bought the lease, planning to redevelop the property. Funding was sought and provided by various bodies, including the, Heritage Lottery Fund, Limavady Borough Council.  and the International fun for Ireland.

In March 2001 Dungiven Castle was re-opened to provide budget accommodation. In 2009 Dungiven Castle underwent a complete redevelopment and redecoration of the entire property. The Castle has now become a 4* Castle Estate.




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