Caisteal Bharraich **

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Castle Varrich, immediately west of Tongue and visible high against the (blue?) sky, was a 14th century stronghold of Clan Mackay, although there are indications it was in even earlier times a Norse fort.

In the 16th century, it (is said) that the castle belonged to the Bishop of Caithness who stayed there on his way from his castle at Scrabster to his property at Balnakeil.

Since its abandonment over two hundred years ago the castle has lain in a poor state of repair, exacerbated by exposure to wind and rain and its condition further deteriorated after a storm in 2015 took down its east wall.

Recently restoration works have been carried out and the project is one of only 9 national and international winners of the AABC Conservation Award at the 2019 Civic Trust Awards.