Brochel Castle / Isle of Raasay *
Region: Isle of Skye & Kyle of Lochalsh
Brochel Castle on Raasay ("Ratharsair" in Gaelic meaning Isle of the Roe Deer), was built allegedly by Calum, first Chief of the Clan MacLeod. Coupled with a sheltered natural harbour that allowed boats to be pulled up the shoreline, Brochel would have provided a strategic base for the Macleods to control their mainland possessions such as Trotternish, Vaternish and Assynt.
Few buildings in Scotland or the British Isles show such a level of ingenuity or design that Brochel clearly displays, even in its current state of disrepair. The castle is an ingenious fusion of natural rock and masonry, intricate brickwork and lime-mortar, rising sheer out of a stack-like volcanic plug some 15 metres high and commanding a position over the coastline. In the late 17th century, the Macleods had relocated to their more modern and comfortable residence in Clachan, and Brochel began the slow decline into disrepair and ruin.
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