Ettagh (Offaly)

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Renowned as the  most  " Haunted Castle"   in Ireland
Renowned as the most " Haunted Castle" in Ireland

5 miles N.E. of Roscrea Town . . 

Fortress . . built originally to guard the passage from the Slieve Bloom mountains . . into the Kingdom of Munster. . . home to the O'Bannon Clan  . . c.1400's

O'Bannons were then deafeated by the O'Carroll's of Ely who held the Castle until the arrival of the Earl of Sussex's army  c.1557

Leap Castle after the arrival of Cromwell's Army passed into the hands of the DARBY family through marriage to an O'Carroll daughter. . c.1620down

The Darby Family held the Lands and Castle for the next three centuries until after Land Agitation the Castle burned down 1922.

The Land held by the Castle was in the region of 4,500 acres which was then sub divided to small Tenant farmers .

There have been attempted part restoration of the Castle ever since  and it's present owners will encourage interested Groups to visit and tour by prior arrangement.

Leap Castle

Census of Ireland Leap Castle

Type of Building:



  • I believe I am a descendant of the O'Bannon clan who lived around Leap Castle. My ancestor Bannons emigrated to Toronto, Canada in the 1840s. I was thrilled to see the outside of Leap Castle when passing through Roscrea on a visit to the area a few years ago. A magnificent semi-ruin that I'm glad is being restored and occupied.

    Sharleen Bannon, Chelsea, Quebec Canada.

    Sharleen Bannon

    Saturday 5th May 2018 05:08PM
  • My great grandfather Martin Tehan who emigrated to America in 1883 was from Ballinlough townland in County Offaly which is near Leap Castle.  His parents were John Tehan & Catherine (Kitty) Brannon.  Perhaps we are related to the Bannon's that owned the castle?  Submitted by Robert Tehan, Oklahoma Coty, OK





    Thursday 28th May 2020 12:55PM
  • Hi Robert from Oklahoma. We may be distant cousins. I am sure my branch of the Bannon family did not own Leap Castle but they probably lived nearby as farmers in County Tipperary. My great-grandfather Patrick Boynane/Bannon and Briget Blake were married in June 1825 in Newport, Co. Tipperary in June 1825 and emigrated to Quebec, Canada in the 1840s. My branch of the Bannons, descended from their son also named Patrick Bannon who then settled in the Toronto, Canada area where many of them still reside. If you would like to follow up on the possibility our family trees may intersect, please do not hesitate to contact me by email at:

    Sharleen Bannon


    Sharleen Bannon

    Tuesday 2nd June 2020 03:08PM
  • Hi  I am joining in the conversation.  Cousin to Sharleen.     I find Bannons in many areas.  Ours were certainly in the Newport Tipperary area in the early 1800s.  In the hills near
    Killoscully.  Offaly is not so very far from this area and I have found Bannon records in that general area.   There were some in the area outside Nenagh  too.    I see records for 
    Martin born 1832 in Kilcolman , Offaly to  John Teahan and Catherine Bannan .  Probably the names were translated differently when they moved. This happens often   Happy to share the records with you.Have you  

    dna tested?  Do you have a gedmatch number?   That would tell us more.    I just found a tree on Ancestry.  Descendant of Patrick ..another of the children of John and Catherine.   They show Catherines parents as Martin Bannan and Mary Drury.

    MaryAnne Bannon 


    Tuesday 23rd June 2020 03:38PM
  • I have been DNA tested.  My results are with Heritage and Family DNA.  I don't know if I Have a gedmatch number.  I will check that out.  I visited my cousin in 2014 who lives close to Leap Castle and is an Ireland xo volunteer.  She is a descendant of Patrick Teehan one of the sons of John Teehan and Catherine Bannon.  The first thing she took us to was a tour of Leap Castle.  It was a great trip and there is an article of that trip on the Ireland xo chronicles.


    Saturday 27th June 2020 12:05PM
  • Hello Robert   You can email me at .   I would love to see if you match any of my list of kits.

    I can teach you about how to get a Gedmatch number too.



    Saturday 27th June 2020 01:40PM
  • Hi again Robert.    If you are on Facebook I invite you to join us at Bannons in Canada & Beyond



    Saturday 27th June 2020 03:50PM

Some communities associated with this building

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Some buildings associated with these communities