Ross Castle was built in the 15th century. Extensive restoration done since 1970 – especially in the 1990s, very careful and realistic period work done. For example the arched ceilings were created by first weaving hazel rods into a curved wicker roof, then those supported keystones, and then stones and mortar above that to form a stone floor for the next level. Very interesting, tour, unfortunately no interior photos were allowed.
Other castle facts: spiral stone staircase had risers of differing heights and widths as a defensive measure. It would have been very dark inside – many of the current windows didn’t exist at the time. Servants (15 of them) slept in a tiny room with a wooden loft to add space to the room. The banqueting hall, the largest room, was at the top of the castle and had a beautiful oak beam roof topped by slate. The roofs back then were built by shipbuilders. There was a bedroom for the lord and his family.
The children would have slept on wooden pallets on the floor, covered with furs. The pallets were kept under the bed during the day. The baby was set in a basket in the “cubbyhole” which was an opening in the wall next to the chimney from downstairs which was the warmest spot in the room. Other rooms were a small office, a garderobe/closet (clothes were hung in the ammonia fumes to “dry clean” them), a family room, and a soldiers room on the bottom floor. The roof of the castle was deliberately burned off by the owner in the 1830s so he wouldn’t have to pay tax on two dwellings.