Built in 1818 by John D’Arcy (known as the founder of Clifden), Clifden Castle is a ruinous gothic style manor house which served as the main dwelling for the large D’Arcy family.
Following John D’Arcy’s death in 1839, the castle and estate was inherited by his oldest son, Hyacinth. However, Hyacinth lacked the control and ability to deal with tenants as his father did and the family suddenly found themselves bankrupt, not helped by the famine which struck in 1845.
As a result the castle and estate was purchased by Thomas and Charles Eyre, brothers from Bath, who used the castle as a holiday home. After the Eyre family, the castle became uninhabited after 1894 and fell into disrepair. In 1935, ownership passed to a group of tenants, who were to own it jointly, and it quickly became a ruin.