Charlemont Fort

Map Reference: H854558 (2854, 3558)

Charlemont Fort was built by Charles Blount, Lord Deputy Mountjoy in June 1602. In it he placed a garrison of 150 men under the command of Captain Toby Caulfield, whose descendants became the Earls of Charlemont. The house which was built in the middle of the fort seems to have been a large three-storey tower with various projections and topped by crenellations and multiple chimneys. It remained a government building until 1858 when it was acquired by the Charlemont family. However they seemed to be more concerned with looking after their large house, Roxborough Castle, just on the other side of the River Blackwater. The central building was burned on 30 July 1920. The ruins were bought by a contractor who sold the bricks and stones for cheap building material. The surviving gatehouse probably dates from the late 17th century but it received a makeover in the 18th century. It now looks like a Classical Georgian building with a pediment and coat of arms over the doorway. It gives access to a rectangular walled enclosure with spear-shaped corners. There are traces of drawbridge chains but any moat is now filled up. Portions of the outer earthen bank of the artillery fort still exist.

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