Kinclaven Castle is hidden behind trees on the edge of the lovely River Tay in a beautiful courtyard spot filled with wood garlic.The castle is roughly square in plan measuring approximately 140 square feet with walls up to 8 feet thick with some still standing to a height of 24 feet. It is built on the site of a much older fortress visited by King Malcolm Canmore in the late eleventh century. It was defended by the steep banks to the River Tay with deep ditches or moat with a possible drawbridge.
Access to this castle is a little tricky as there is nowhere to park anywhere near the site, as the road is busy towards the narrow bridge and the junction to the main road. The ruins are located in the woods behind Meikleour fishing's private car park.
~ History ~
1230's ~ King Alexander II orders the building of a new castle at Kinclaven on the site of an earlier fortress.
1296 ~ The invading English army of King Edward I capture and occupy the castle.
1297 ~ A detachment of Scots under the command of William Wallace capture and kill the entire English garrison.
The Scots remain in the castle for seven days before destroying it so as it cannot be used by the English who are certain to return and the Scots unable to hold it.
1329 ~ Following the death of King Robert the Bruce and his two most able lieutenants, the Black Douglas and Thomas Randolph, Scotland is left with an infant King David II. The English King Edward III seizes this opportunity to support Edward Balliol's claim to the throne as a puppet King, as his grandfather King Edward I had done with Edward's father King John Balliol.
The English backed Edward Balliol defeats the Scottish Regent, the Earl of Mar's army at the Battle of Dupplin Moor.
1332 ~ Edward Balliol is crowned King of Scotland at Scone as puppet King to the English Crown. However, within just three months he is forced to flee half-naked back to England, following a surprise attack by Scottish nobles loyal to Robert the Bruce's son, King David II, as the Battle of Annan.
On his frantic escape from Scotland Edward takes sanctuary with the Clifford family in their Cumbrian castles at Appleby, Brougham, Brough and Pendragon.
1333 ~ The English Crown retaliate with an army who defeat the Scots at the Battle of Halidon Hill. Edward Balliol is restored by the English as their puppet King. As a gesture of his loyalty Edward Balliol cedes Lothian to King Edward III of England as his liege lord.
1334 ~ With little or no Scots backing, Edward Balliol is once again deposed by the Scots.
1335 ~ The English return under King Edward III and make repairs to Kinclaven castle so as it can be garrisoned and held against the Scots. Edward Balliol is once again restored as King of Scotland.
1336 ~ King Balliol is again deposed when King David II returns from his exile in France with the backing of the Scottish nobles. Kinclaven is again captured and destroyed by the Scots.
1346 ~ Edward Balliol once again returns with the backing of an English army following King David II's defeat at the Battle of Neville's Cross. He raises an insurrection in Galloway, and speedily penetrates to the central parts of the kingdom. However, without Scottish support he gains no permanent foothold and is forced to retreat.
1356 ~ Edward Balliol finally surrenders his claim to the Scottish throne to King Edward III of England in exchange for an English pension. He spends the rest of his life living in obscurity, dying eleven years later near Doncaster in Yorkshire.
Kinclaven Castle is partially rebuilt.
1455 ~ The castle is left to fall into ruin and allowed to decay.