Castle Roche is one of the most striking Anglo- Norman castles in Ireland and can be viewed for miles around. Located on a rocky hilltop, it commands wonderful views of the surrounding countryside. Lady Rohesia de Verdun built the castle in 1236 AD. Legend has it that Lady Rohesia promised her hand in marriage to the architect if he completed the castle to her satisfaction. When he went to claim her hand, she had him thrown from one of the windows, which to this day is known as the 'murder window'.
The site of the castle marked the boundary between the Gaelic province of Ulster and the Anglo-Norman 'Pale' and overlooked an ancient route into what is now south Armagh. The castle itself comprised a great hall, which may have been up to three storeys high. Access was gained through a gatehouse with two towers. A ditch encloses this side of the castle and there may have been a drawbridge in front of the gatehouse. A meeting of all the English forces in Ireland took place here in 1561 AD.
Please take care parking in the narrow laneway and do not block gateways. Please keep all gates closed, site is on private farmland. You can walk to it through farm gates, etc.,. Land is rough and rocky and very steep to the west.
A short drive away you fill find Stephenstown Pond and Nature Park, an ideal family day out where you can enjoy a picnic, feed the ducks and other wildlife.