19 July 1210: King John of England arrived before the Castle of Carrickfergus in Ulster and besieged it on this day. It soon fell into his hands and in the days following he received a visit from the King of Tyrone/ Tir Eoghan, Aed Meith O Neill. His visitor brought a large contingent of troops with him, perhaps 2,000 warriors to impress the Anglo-Norman Monarch. The Ulster king agreed to render John service but the two kings drew different conclusions as to what that actually meant.
The King of Connacht was also a somewhat reluctant part of King John’s host and actively helped him in suppressing the Anglo-Norman De lacy family that had upset the King of England’s temperament. King John had met up with King Cathal Crobhderg O’Conner of Connacht near Ardbraccan, Co Meath. King Cathal recognised him as his Lord in return for being re-assured as the recognised & rightful King of Connacht.
Johannes, grandson of the Empress, king of the Saxons, came to Erinn, with a great fleet, in this year.
After arriving he commanded a great hosting of the men of Erinn to Ulidia, to apprehend Hugo de Laci, or to expel him from Erinn, and to capture Carraic-Fergusa.
Hugo left Erinn, and the persons who were defending the Carraic abandoned it, and came to the king; and the king put men of his own company into it.
Annals of Loch Cé
For John this was quite a success as the strongest castle in the north east had fallen without a fight and 30 Knights had surrendered to him. However the primary targets of this expedition into Ulster - the Brothers Hugh & Walter - escaped to France.