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Kindrochit Castle

Tower House (Medieval)

Site Name Kindrochit Castle

Classification Tower House (Medieval)

Alternative Name(s) Old Kindrochit Castle; Braemar

Canmore ID 29738

Site Number NO19SE 1

NGR NO 15122 91338

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number AC0000807262. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Aberdeenshire
  • Parish Crathie And Braemar
  • Former Region Grampian
  • Former District Kincardine And Deeside
  • Former County Aberdeenshire

Archaeology Notes

NO19SE 1 15122 91338

(NO 1513 9135) Kindrochit Castle (NR) (Rems. of).

OS 6" map, Aberdeenshire, 2nd ed., (1903)

The palace, or hunting seat, of Robert II which he used annually from 1371 to 1388, occupied a very strong position between the Water of Clunie and an ancient mill-lade. The remains consisted of an oblong hall, 100 feet long and 30 feet wide, with unvaulted cellars below and quadrangular towers at the corners.

On 10th November 1390 a license was granted by King Robert to Malcolm Drummond to build a new tower. Excavations in 1925 showed this to be an oblong tower-house, 64 feet long and 43 feet broad, with walls 10 feet thick. Evidence was found of the ancient bridge across the Clunie which gave the castle its name.

W D Simpson 1923, 1928, 1949.

Kindrochit Castle, as described and planned by Simpson is very ruinous.

Re-surveyed at 1/2500.

Visited by OS (N K B) 26 October 1967.


Scottish Castle Survey 1988; N Bogdan and I B D Bryce 1991.

Architecture Notes


PLANS: Measured and drawn by Fenton Wyness 1920-26

and stored at 45 Salisbury Place, Aberdeen - 1/3" plans


Watching Brief (19 August 2013 - 30 March 2015)

North-East Scotland Preservation Trust commissioned Alder Archaeology to undertake an archaeological watching brief on the site of consolidation works at Kindrochit Castle, Braemar. The castle, in ruinous condition, is a scheduled ancient monument (HS No 2583). The work was undertaken in varying weather conditions. The requirement was to monitor all groundworks including de-turfing of floor levels and standing walls and to record all archaeological features exposed by consolidation work. A photographic record of all cleaned and consolidated wallheads was created at the same time. Several features were exposed including: a postern gate floor and double gate recesses; slots for gate bars; hinge sockets containing traces of lead; a storage recess within a larder room; window splays/arrow slit bases; buttress or tower bases reinforcing the main walls. The castle structure was found to be generally of unworked or rough-dressed quarried stone with lime mortar bonding.

Information from C Fyles (Alder Archaeology Ltd).

Archaeological Evaluation (2 June 2014 - 3 June 2014)

NO 1512 9134 (centred on) An evaluation was undertaken, 2–3 June 2014, followed by an excavation, 30 June – 4 July 2014, on the site of consolidation work at Kindrochit Castle. The castle, in ruinous condition, is a SAM (2583).

The excavation of two test pits during the evaluation suggested the presence of a buried wall feature. The area between the test pits was then excavated, with special attention being paid to anystructural remains and the relationship between these and the already exposed castle remains. The excavation recorded the basal courses of a substantial defensive wall linking the extant (ruinous) gatehouse with the remains of a corner tower in the SE quadrant of the site. The base of a splayed window or arrow slit was also exposed where a possible floor abutted the gatehouse structure. Further work exposed the stubs of two partition walls extending W from the main wall and seemingly destroyed during later building works involving the construction of a tower house.

Archive: RCAHMS (intended)

Funder: North East Scotland Preservation Trust

Chris Fyles – Alder Archaeology Ltd

(Source: DES)


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