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Sorn Castle

Castle (Medieval), Country House (Period Unassigned)

Site Name Sorn Castle

Classification Castle (Medieval), Country House (Period Unassigned)

Alternative Name(s) Sorn Castle Policies

Canmore ID 43548

Site Number NS52NW 1

NGR NS 54804 26913

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Digital Images

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Administrative Areas

  • Council East Ayrshire
  • Parish Sorn
  • Former Region Strathclyde
  • Former District Cumnock And Doon Valley
  • Former County Ayrshire

Archaeology Notes

NS52NW 1 54804 26913

NS52NW 1.01 NS 54741 26814 Turbine House

NS52NW 1.02 NS 53755 26159 Daldorch House (Former Dower House)

NS52NW 1.03 NS 54914 26959 Cleuch Cottage (former East Gatehouse)

NS52NW 1.04 NS 54566 27151 Upper Gate Lodge (former entrance lodge)

NS52NW 1.05 NS 54744 26796 Suspension Bridge (River Ayr)

NS52NW 1.06 NS c. 547 271 Sundial

See also:

NS52NW 14.00 NS 53668 26053 Daldorch House, Stables

NS52NW 15.00 NS 54320 27095 Sawmill

NS52NW 15.01 NS 54285 27100 Sawmill Cottage and Gatepiers

NS52NW 31 NS 5445 2662 Burial-ground

NS52NW 137 NS 54830 26741 Kilknowe Cottage

NS52NW 139 NS 54553 27026 Stables

(NS 5480 2690) Sorn Castle (NR) (restored)

OS 6" map (1967)

Sorn Castle, an extensive mansion, is rectangular on plan; only the S half is old, and of that only the W end represents the original fortalice. This in not at first apparent as the later work was all carried out in similar style and in the same stone. The early structure was a massively-built square tower of at least 15th century date and possibly earlier. A panel on the W wall, not itself of any antiquity, bears the date 1409. This tower, of three storeys and a garret, has been extended eastwards apparently in the 16th century, in the same style. The corbelling, parapet and rounds date form this period. Many of the windows have been enlarged, with oriels, balconies etc added. The Statistical Account (OSA) refers to extensions made to Sorn Castle on, or just after 1782.

D MacGibbon and T Ross 1892; N Tranter 1965; Statistical Account (OSA) 1798

Sorn Castle: named confirmed (Mrs Law, caretaker). The exterior walls are of uniform appearance on all sides. The building is in very good condition and is in use as a residence. A tablet in the SW wall reads "Extant AD 1409, Added to AD 1783, Restored AD 1865, Enlarged AD 1909".

Visited by OS (JFC) 16 June 1954

Although incorporated within the 18th century and later house, the 16th century and earlier work retains a distinct appearance on the SW and SE sides and the upper storeys are visible above the line of the 1909 additions on the NE. The late additions have obviously altered the SE and NE elevations but the floor plans remain generally accurate. Not shown, however, is a gun-loop in the SW wall of the original tower, retained as a feature of the barrel vaulted basement floor.

Sorn Castle is still occupied as a private residence.

Visited by OS (JRL) 8 October 1981.

Architecture Notes


NS52NW 139 54553 27026 Stables

NS52NW 137 54830 26741 Kilknowe Cottage

NS52NW 15 54320 27095 Sawmill

NS52NW 25 5474 2679 Suspension Bridge

NS52NW 1.01 54741 26814 Turbine House

NS52NW 1.02 53755 26159 Daldorch House (Former Dower House)

NS52NW 14.00 53668 26053 Daldorch House Stables

NS52NW 1.03 54914 26959 Cleuch Cottage (former East Gatehouse)

NS52NW 1.04 54566 27151 Upper Gate Lodge (former entrance lodge)

NS52NW 1.06 c. 547 271 Sundial

Owner: Lord Sorn

Architect: 15th and 16th century.

David Bryce 1864 (additions)

William Railton Prepared scheme

HE Clifford


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