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Oakwood Tower

Tower House (Medieval)

Site Name Oakwood Tower

Classification Tower House (Medieval)

Alternative Name(s) Aikwood Tower

Canmore ID 54303

Site Number NT42NW 6

NGR NT 42006 26042

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Scottish Borders, The
  • Parish Selkirk
  • Former Region Borders
  • Former District Ettrick And Lauderdale
  • Former County Selkirkshire

Archaeology Notes

(NT 4200 2602) Oakwood Tower (NR)

OS 6" map (1957)

Oakwood Tower, a strongly-built peel, stands on top of a bluff overlooking the Ettrick Water. It is three storeys and a garret in height and oblong on plan, measuring externally 38 ft by 23 1/2 ft.

It was built about 1600, possibly in 1602, the date carved on the voussoir arch, now inserted over the lintel of a second-floor window on the SE side. Modern Farm buildings abut the SE wall, and the SW end of the NW wall. Modern openings have been broken through both gables and the crow-steps have been removed. Otherwise, the tower has been little altered externally and is still complete having been re-roofed and repaired some years ago, when some of the windows were renewed. It is in use as a storehouse.

RCAHMS 1957, visited 1934

Oakwood is mentioned in earlier charters, of 1517 and 1541.

N Tranter 1963

Oakwood Tower, in good repair, is generally as described.

Visited by OS (RD) 31 January 1966

NT 4200 2603. Oakwood Tower is an outstanding and well preserved example of a peel tower; it is now unused. The modern openings are still extant but farm buildings now abut only the SE wall. The crow-steps on both gable ends appear to be original features so the note about their removal is apparently erroneous.

Visited by OS (MJF) 5 December 1979

Being restored for occupation.

N Tranter 1990.

Architecture Notes


Items held at the National Archives of Scotland:

Repair of the slate roof of Oakwood House.

Payment of £31.9.4 (Scots) to John Bostoun, slater.

1744 GD 157/790

Plan of the Old Tower of Oakwood.

It accompanies a pencilled plan of Oakwood House and an estimate for repairs at the farmhouse.

Signed by Neill Bell and Andrew Lang.

1814 GD 157/574/1

Repair of 'the slate houses'.

Agreement between Sir William Scott of Harden and Patrick Thomsone, slater in Haddington.

1667 GD 157/501

Repairs to 'Oakwood Castle'.

Receipted account amounting to £51.1.9. from Samuel Mills.

It includes the expense of repairing the stair, providing wood for the roof,

putting up the stair door and putting 2 new windows in the roof.

1836 GD 157/903

Estimate for Oakwood Building & repairs and pencil plan labelled

"Oakwood House" 1815.

Selkir: Plan & elevation of the Old Tower of Oakwood.

Sgd.N Tur[ ] GD 157/574/1

Elevation of a 2 & 4 window addition to tower.


Sbc Note

Visibility: This is an upstanding building.

Information from Scottish Borders Council.


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