THE MOAT OF ARDSCULL


The Moat of Ardscull

  The Moat of Ardscull is steeped in local myth and legend and is indeed believed by some to be the abode of the ‘little people’. It is assumed to have been built in the late 12th or 13th century. The first clear reference to the Moat is in 1654 when the Book of General Orders noted a request from the inhabitants of County Kildare for the State to contribute 30 "towards the finishing of a Fort that they have built at the Moat of Ardscull". The appearance of the Moat was greatly enhanced in the 1800’s with the plantation of trees and the construction of the wall which surrounds it. More recently, Kilmead Community Council have developed a picnic area which has become a popular spot with locals and tourists alike.
 

  The Moat of Ardscull is situated in a commanding position, on the main Kilcullen to Athy road, affording extensive views in all directions. The Moat is a large oval-shaped mound, surrounded by a ditch and bank. The entrance was on the west where there is an opening through the upper bank and a causeway across the ditch. The ditch is between 6 and 7m wide and the external bank is 10m wide.

A sub-rectangular area is visible from aerial photographs on the north side of the moat. This may be the remains of a ploughed-out bailey. Field walking in the area uncovered shreds of post-medieval pottery and a furnace bottom.

 


photo of the Moat showing the surrounding wall