Hallforest Castle in Kintore, Aberdeenshire, Scotland

John Stewart

Inverurie, United Kingdom

Artist's Description

The ruins of Hallforest Castle in Kintore in Aberdeenshire Scotland.

A mile to the south-west of Kintore town centre stand the ruins of Hallforest Castle. An oblong keep 48 feet by 30 feet, the walls are around seven foot thick and the castle in its current ruined state stands around 60 feet.

Built in the 13th or 14th Century. It was a hunting castle which took its name from the great forest in which King James IV hunted. The forest, which lay between Kintore and Kemnay, is also recalled in street names such as Forest Road, Tom’s Forest.

It is said that it was built by King Robert the Bruce as hunting lodge. In 1305 Sir Robert Keith (12th Great Marischal), was chosen as one of ten Scots to represent his country at the English parliament, but in 1308 found him fighting with Bruce’s army at the Battle of Berra, near Inverurie.

The Keith family helped Robert the Bruce in gaining his throne in the ensuing battles for independence from the English. He was rewarded by King Robert the Bruce by land at Hallforest, Kintore that included the castle. And so the Keith’s arrived in the Garioch and the castle became the former stronghold of the Keith family.

Mary Queen of Scots is known to have stayed at Hallforest in 1562.

Artwork Comments

  • Ciaran O'Hagan
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