Portaferry Castle is a small tower house in built in the 16th century by William Le Savage. In 1635, Patrick Savage's brother-in-law, Sir James Montgomery of Rosemount (Greyabbey), repaired the castle by roofing and flooring it so that his sister could live in greater comfort there.
It is a square building with a small projecting turret on the south corner. It is three storeys high plus attic and there is no vault. Most of the eastern corner is in ruins. The entrance at the base of the tower is protected by a small machicolation and the entrance to the ground floor chamber is protected by a murder-hole. A curved stairway within the tower rises to the first floor and a spiral stairway in the west corner continues to roof level.References:
Sirmione castle was built near the end of the 12th century as part of a defensive network surrounding Verona. The castle was maintained and extended first as part of the Veronese protection against their rivals in Milan and later under the control of the Venetian inland empire. The massive fortress is totally surrounded by water and has an inner porch which houses a Roman and Medieval lapidary. From the drawbridge, a staircase leads to the walkways above the walls, providing a marvellous view of the harbour that once sheltered the Scaliger fleet. The doors were fitted with a variety of locking systems, including a drawbridge for horses, carriages and pedestrians, a metal grate and, more recently, double hinged doors. Venice conquered Sirmione in 1405, immediately adopting provisions to render the fortress even more secure, fortifying its outer walls and widening the harbour.
Thanks to its strategical geographical location as a border outpost, Sirmione became a crucial defence and control garrison for the ruling nobles, retaining this function until the 16th century, when its role was taken up by Peschiera del Garda.