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Archaeology Notes

Event ID 714152

Category Descriptive Accounts

Type Archaeology Notes


NT36NE 2 3903 6980.

(NT 3903 6980) Elphinstone Tower (NR)

OS 6" map (1968)

Elphinstone Tower is a 15th century rectangular tower of three main storeys beneath the wall-head, which terminates in a 16th century parapet walk, while the roof is modern. It measures 50 1/2' E-W by 35', with 8' thick walls, and is 57' from ground to parapet. It is unusual for the large number of mural chambers, passages and stairways which honeycomb its walls. Having been long occupied, the tower is not in a good condition, and it is being affected by mining subsidence.

The lands of Elphinstone were held by the family which took their name from the 13th century onwards, and presumably some portion of their fortalice is incorporated in the present tower. In the 15th century the heiress of the main line married Sir Gilbert Johnstone, who completed the building as it now stands.

RCAHMS 1924, visited 1915; N Tranter 1962

Elphinstone Tower has been partially demolished. The N wall, with one doorway intact, remains to a height of 4.0m while the S wall has completely disappeared.

Visited by OS (BS) 22 October 1975.

Elphinstone Tower was damaged by subsidence and finally demolished in 1955.

C McWilliam 1978.

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