Located near the village of Dailly on the western coast of Scotland, Dalquharran Castle is a category A listed building which was completed in 1790. Two castles actually exist on the site, an older one which was abandoned in the 19th Century and this one which was in use until the 1960’s. The estate, including the old castle, was bought in the late 17th Century by the Lord Provost of Edinburgh, Sir Thomas Kennedy of Kirkhill. He asked leading architect Robert Adam to design a new castle/mansion for him.
The castle was designed to be symmetrical around a central entrance hall and spiral staircase.
The house had four floors, with bedchambers originally on two of them. Whilst a ruined shell today, the interior would have been decorated in a classical style, with a drawing room and library providing stunning views across the Girvan Water. Services were located in the basement with a lift which still remains. When the castle was completed in 1790, Thomas Kennedy moved out of the old castle which still stands in ruins and it was listed in 1935.
The property was sold by the Kennedy family in the 1930s to a timber merchant who leased the castle to the Scottish Youth Hostel Association from 1936 to 1939. During the Second World War it was occupied by the Glasgow Deaf and Dumb Institution who were evacuated there. Post-war the estate was sold again, this time to John Stewart, a produce merchant, however the large castle became too expensive to maintain and was abandoned with the lead roof tiles removed so that it could be declared uninhabitable and therefore avoid paying rates. It was listed in 1971.
Planning permission was granted in 1990 for a major redevelopment of the site which would have included two golf courses, a hotel and hundreds of holiday homes however no works ever started. Further plans were submitted in 2004, 2009 and 2014 yet none of these materialised. The 261-acre site was put up for sale in 2019 for £800,000 by development company Kezia DCM Ltd.