Glen Road, off A9
Torwood Castle is an L-shaped mid 16th century tower house built in the vicinity of an earlier 13th century castle, where Robert the Bruce and his arch rival John Comyn would meet as joint guardians of Scotland. This later castle is furnished with with defensive shot-holes to reflect the military technology of its time.
The castle is located at the end of a long track from the main road, where with consideration you can park. There is a woodland track that that you to nearby Tappoch Broch which is also well worth exploring.
Sadly the castle is closed to visitors as preservation work is underway and also to prevent vandalism which has plagued this lovely castle.
Look out for the escape tunnel below!
~ History ~
1314 ~ Tor Wood is used as camp and gathering place for Scottish soldiers led by James Douglas, one of the commanders of the army of King Robert the Bruce, before the Battle of Bannockburn.
1463 ~ Clan Forrester are made the hereditary keepers of the Royal Forest of Tor wood by King James III of Scotland.
1480 ~ Sir Duncan Forrester is awarded the important position of Kepper of nearby Stirling Castle.
1566 ~ Alexander Forrester, keepers of Tor wood for royal hunting & the provision of timber for the King, builds himself an L-plan tower house.
1585 ~ The Earls of Angus and Mar capture the castle as they prepare to take Stirling Castle
1635 ~ The estates pass to Lord Forrester of Corstorphine,who reconstructs the rectangular forecourt of ancillary buildings on the north side of the castle.
1650's ~ The next owner is James Baillie of Castlecary who marries Lord Forrester's third daughter and so inherits both castle and title. However, he is obliged to sell off the estate by Oliver Cromwell to meet his inforced debts, due to his family's support for the Royalist cause. James had been fined £2500 by Cromwell, whose troops had caused significant damage to his estate.
1660s ~ With Torwood still in his possession, Jame's financial situation is dire, and he is recorded as having become a depressed alcoholic.
1679 ~ James refuses to return from his heavy drinking spree for a meeting and is stabbed to death with his own sword by his niece after a quarrel over the matter. This tragedy being a crime of passion since he had previously seduced his niece.
1698 ~ James's nephew William is forced to sell Torwood castle due to the families massive debts.
1748 ~ The Torwood estate is sold to the Dundas family.
1817 ~ The castle is recorded as 'in ruins'.