For other uses, see Castlereagh (disambiguation).
An Caisleán Riabhach

Location in Ireland

Coordinates: 53°46′00″N 8°30′00″W / 53.7667°N 8.5°W / 53.7667; -8.5Coordinates: 53°46′00″N 8°30′00″W / 53.7667°N 8.5°W / 53.7667; -8.5
Country Republic of Ireland
Province Connacht
County County Roscommon
Elevation 82 m (269 ft)
Population (2011)
  Urban 3,055
Irish Grid Reference M670797

Castlerea (/ˌkæsəlˈr/; Irish: An Caisleán Riabhach, meaning "brindled castle") is the second largest town in County Roscommon, Republic of Ireland. It is located in the west of the county and, as of 2011, has a population of 3,055. Roughly translated from Irish, Castlerea can mean Brindled Castle (Caisleán Riabhach) or King's Castle (Caisleán ). The town is built on the banks of the River Suck and the River Francis, both of which are tributaries of the River Shannon.


Clonalis House, located in the west of Castlerea, is the ancestral home of the Clan O'Conor, the last of the High Kings of Ireland. The O'Conor dynasty produced eleven high kings of Ireland and twenty-four kings of Connacht.

Theophilus Sandford, a member of Oliver Cromwell's army in Ireland, received a large allocation of lands confiscated from the O'Connor family as part of the Act for the Settlement of Ireland 1652. This package included Castlerea.[1] Castlerea developed under the Sandfords, who established a distillery (at its height producing more than 20,000 of gallons of whiskey annually), a brewery, and a tannery. Sandford's descendants continued in power through the 19th century. The estate was later acquired by the Land Commission and the Congested Districts Board. The demesne in which it was set survives and is now enjoyed as a public park.

On 11 July 1921, Sergeant James King of the Royal Irish Constabulary was shot in Castlerea on St. Patrick Street and died of his wounds shortly afterward. The Truce of July 1921 was declared later that day, making Sergeant King the last casualty of the Irish War of Independence.[2]

At some point in the early 1960s, an elephant which was part of Fossett's circus died while the circus was performing in Castlerea. According to the local authority engineer at the time,[3] it was buried under the Fair Green, now part of Castlerea Co-op Livestock Mart.



Castlerea hosts the Castlerea Celtic, an association football team, and St. Kevin's, a Gaelic football club.


Climate Table
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average daily maximum temperature (°C) 10 11 12 14 18 20 23 23 19 16 12 11 15.75
Average daily minimum temperature (°C) −3 −2 0 1 4 7 9 8 6 3 0 0 2.75
Mean total rainfall (mm) 80 50 60 50 60 60 60 80 70 80 70 80 800
Source: Yahoo! Weather

Education and industry

Castlerea's major employers include Supervalu, Harmac Medical Products, Colour Communications Europe, Finola Foods and Lidl. Film production house Round Edge Films is based in Ballingare within Castlerea.

The schools in the town are all located in the same area; they include two primary schools (St. Anne's Primary School and St. Paul's Primary School), St. Michael’s Special Needs School (which serves all ages), and Castlerea Community School (for second-level students). Castlerea Community School instructs approximately 500 students; It provides Leaving Certificate Applied classes as well as the Junior Certificate and Leaving Certificate state examinations. As of 2011, the school also offered Transition Year and two Post-Leaving Certificate courses (Business and Social Care).


Amenities in the town include a nine-hole golf course, an outdoor swimming pool open to the public during summers, a library, a soccer pitch, a children's playground, a GAA pitch and a large public park. The GAA owns a squash court and a handball court in the town. The Neighbourhood Youth Project (NYP) is a social venue for teenagers in the town. St. Patrick's Church (estd.1896) is the Catholic Church of the town, and is administered by Canon Joe Fitzgerald and Fr. Micheál Donnelly.

The Castlerea railway station opened on 15 November 1860.[7] The railway station connects to Dublin Heuston, Ballina and Westport.


Castlerea is twinned with Newark, New Jersey and Soulac Sur Mer, France.

See also


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