Kilwaughter Castle just outside Larne in Co. Antrim, was the ancient stronghold of the Agnew family. The present Castle, designed by the acclaimed English architect John Nash, began its refurbishment in 1806 and finished a year later. The restoration, built in the Scottish Baronial style, was based around an earlier Tower House from the 17th Century. The Castle has seen many changes over the years, but has always been owned by descendants of the original family. During World War II, due to its Agnew-Italian ownership, the Castle was sequestrated by the British Government as Enemy Property. In 1951 it was stripped of all the lead and anything of value and eventually handed back to the Italian owners.
The Castle has continued to deteriorate and is a shadow of its former self. Early in 2016, a social media campaign was started to save it (https://en-gb.facebook.com/SaveKilwaughterCastle/) and through this and other events, local interest and support has continued to grow. A small Restoration Group has been formed, supported by the Prince’s Regeneration Trust and it is hoped to raise enough funds to start a step-by-step restoration.