The oldest parts of the Croy castle were probably built in the 15th century. There is not much known about the history of the castle. Jacob van Croÿ, Bishop of Cambrai was in 1477 owner of the land, but a house is not mentioned. In the 16th century villages in the neighbourhood were several times demolished, probably also the castle (but this is not recorded).
The last inhabitant was Freule (Lady) Constance van der Brugghen. Her uncle bought Croy in 1772, In 1773 he died and left the castle to his half brother Johan Karel Gideon. He married Margaretha Gertuda Falck and they had three sons and a daughter. In 1820, 1826 and 1864 the sons died. Freule (Lady) Constance van der Brugghen died in 1873 and left the building to municipality of Stiphout with the obligation to use the building for the help of poor elderly people. This was led by the sisters of Geloof, Hoop en Liefde. In 1977 the firemen disapprove the house as being a house for elderly people because of the safety regulation. The castle is currently no longer inhabited but in use as an office.
Research of the castle points that the size was more or less the same all those years. The building history seems complex but not much is know from written sources. Its seems that the original building has been severely damaged. The Cellar, the right wing and the round tower are probably from the beginning of the construction. The last changes e.g. the entrance and the Crow-stepped gable were build in the 18th century.References:
Dating from the 15th century, Kisimul is the only significant surviving medieval castle in the Outer Hebrides. It was the residence of the chief of the Macneils of Barra, who claimed descent from the legendary Niall of the Nine Hostages. Tradition tells of the Macneils settling in Barra in the 11th century, but it was only in 1427 that Gilleonan Macneil comes on record as the first lord. He probably built the castle that dominates the rocky islet, and in its shadow a crew house for his personal galley and crew. The sea coursed through Macneil veins, and a descendant, Ruari ‘the Turbulent’, was arrested for piracy of an English ship during King James VI’s reign in the later 16th century.
Heavy debts eventually forced the Macneil chiefs to sell Barra in 1838. However, a descendant, Robert Lister Macneil, the 45th Chief, repurchased the estate in 1937, and set about restoring his ancestral seat. It passed into Historic Scotland’s care in 2000.
The castle dates essentially from the 15th century. It takes the form of a three-storey tower house. This formed the residence of the clan chief. An associated curtain wall fringed the small rock on which the castle stood, and enclosed a small courtyard in which there are ancillary buildings. These comprised a feasting hall, a chapel, a tanist’s house and a watchman’s house. Most were restored in the 20th century, the tanist’s house serving as the family home of the Macneils. A well near the postern gate is fed with fresh water from an underground seam. Outside the curtain wall, beside the original landing-place, are the foundations of the crew house, where the sailors manning their chief’s galley had their quarters.