Castle Street c1900 Courtesy of the Lawrence Collection
The first Castle was built in c1235 by the De Barrie family who gave their name to the town and their castle to the street. They came with the De Burgos after the Norman invasion and settled here for a short while. The first mention of the castle in the Annals of Connacht is 1412 when it was burnt by a rival clan. There were many battles over the castle between the O’ Connors, Fitzgeralds, the Burkes and others. In 1585 ‘The Composition of Connaught’ signed by Elizabeth I gave the territory of Burrisarra i.e. Carra and the castle at Castlebar to Edmund Burke and his heirs to come. The Burkes were then quickly defeated by Sir Richard Bingham and the castle was sold to his brother John for 100 cows and £5. The ruins of the castle are shown on some Ordnance Survey Maps to be located in the present day Military Barracks. Some historians believe that Castle Street is in fact the oldest street in the town as it was a walkway from the castle and used before the bridge was built.