Portencross Castle

Map graphic showing the location of Portencross Castle

How to find us...

SatNav: KA23 9QA
Lat: 53.800651 Long: -4.064941
OS Grid Ref: NS 17538 48921 Portencross Castle Map

Winter Closure 2019/2020

The Castle is now closed for the winter. Please keep an eye on our News and Events page for our 2020 opening.

Portencross Castle Educational Resources
Portencross Castle News and Events
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Welcome to Portencross Castle

Portencross Castle is situated overlooking the Firth of Clyde near West Kilbride in Ayrshire. It is a scheduled ancient monument, a recognition of its national importance. Click on our Calendar to see events.

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2019 Winter Closure

The Castle is now closed for the winter.

Thanks to all those who have made the effort to visit us. We look forward to seeing you again in the future. Say what you thought of your visit on TripAdvisor Tripadvisor image. Please note that Friends of Portencross Castle are not responsible for the municipal car park or any of the land beyond the immediate vicinity of the Castle. The nearest public toilet is in West Kilbride at the corner of Main Street and Glen Road. It is maintained by the local community.

It is possible to arrange access to the castle outwith the normal operating season for specific purposes and interests such as organisations or groups who for legitimate reasons cannot visit during our summer season. If you are interested in such a visit or event, please contact Ann on 01294 823799. There may be charge involved in opening the castle during the closed season. Click this link to get in touch with us.

About this website

This website has been set up by the Friends of Portencross Castle. Our aim is to build up a collection of words, images and other media to form an informative and educational online resource containing the history of Portencross Castle, both past and present.

You can help us to build this resource. We are looking for anything in connection with Portencross Castle. Perhaps you have a photograph or a poem, maybe an old postcard or a clip of film. If so, we'd love to see it! If you have, post it on Facebook Facebook link or click this link to get in touch.

Sounds and pictures

You can see some pictures of Portencross Castle and surrounding area by clicking here. You can also watch an excerpt from the Restoration programme.Seaside centaury picture by Kerry

The area has inspired photographers and artists over the years. John Mason of the Scottish Fiddle Orchestra composed The Flower of Portencross. You can hear it played on guitar by 'Kev'.

You can also view poems and pictures by children and parents at West Kilbride Primary School.

You can see an aerial fly-over of the castle and its surrounds in this atmospheric video.

Portencross has been inhabited for thousands of years. An archaeological dig found evidence of an Iron Age settlement on Auldhill, just behind Portencross Castle. The Iron Age lasted from around 800 BC to 100 BC.

Portencross Castle was constructed in three phases starting around 1360. It was the home of a branch of the Boyds.

Photograph showing Portencross Castle undergoing conservation

Portencross Castle underwent major building conservation works during 2009 and 2010 all thanks to the fund-raising efforts of the local community of Portencross and through generous donations from various organisations and the public.
Read about how it all happened.

The lands around Portencross were given to the Boyds of Kilmarnock by King Robert I as a reward for their help at the Battle of Bannockburn. A number of Royal Charters were signed at the castle and it had close links with King Robert II during that period.

After the 1600s, it was occupied by local fishermen. The roof was destroyed in a gale in January 1739. By the 20th century, the Adams of Auchenames owned the castle. It became a scheduled ancient monument in 1955.