DETAILS of plans to develop Desmond Castle in Kinsale as an interpretative centre, given the national and international significance of the Battle of Kinsale in 1601, were sought in the Upper House by Fine Gael Senator Tim Lombard.
He said the town had an international element because not only did Irish forces fight the Crown forces, over 1,000 Spanish soldiers were involved in the siege and battle. ‘The Spanish Government is very much aware of the battle and has been proactive about it,’ he said.
‘We need to step into the space and have an interpretive centre in Kinsale in order that we can promote the battle site. The centre could become a focal point not alone for Irish and other European visitors but also international visitors from the entire world to learn what happened during the battle and siege.’
Desmond Castle, he said, is a unique structure located in the centre of Kinsale. ‘It has been closed since September 2017. It housed a wine museum which is now closed.’
In reply, Minister of State Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran said Desmond Castle is closed for urgent conservation works and was declared a national monument in 1938.
‘While it is closed, the OPW is taking the opportunity to look again at the site and the approach to it in order that we might possibly reposition it as a visitor attraction and in future marketing.’