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Denholm, Westgate Hall

House (17th Century)

Site Name Denholm, Westgate Hall

Classification House (17th Century)

Canmore ID 55202

Site Number NT51NE 15

NGR NT 56789 18307

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


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

  • Council Scottish Borders, The
  • Parish Cavers
  • Former Region Borders
  • Former District Roxburgh
  • Former County Roxburghshire

Archaeology Notes

NT51NE 15 56789 18307

(NT 5677 1830). Westgate Hall, Denholm. At the S corner of the village there is a 17th-century house, a rare survival of a class of minor building that for the most part has disappeared from Scotland; it was once called Westgate Hall to distinguish it from East Castle, another building which formerly stood at the other extremity of the village on the Jedburgh road.

Oblong on plan, and measuring 55 ft. 3 in. from NW to SE by 22 ft. 7 in. from SW to NE, the house contains two storeys and a garret. On the SW side there is a modern addition, and the fore-stair projecting from the SE gable is also modern. The floor levels have been altered. The masonry is rubble, originally harled, with dressings of freestone.

Those of the windows are rounded at jamb and lintel, but the entrance, which is on the NE side, is distinguished by a bold-quirked edge-roll moulding; its lintel bears the date 1663. The W skew-put bears the device of the Douglas heart; the N skew-put is carved with a scroll and the other two are everted.

Internally the house has been modernised, but on the ground floor there survives a large fireplace in the NW. gable, the recess measuring 5 ft. 10 in. in breadth by 4ft. 1 in. in height. The massive lintel, 2 ft. and half an inch in height, bears two recessed panels side by side. The dexter one, which is octagonal, contains the initials S A D for Sir Archibald Douglas and below them the charges of his shield- a heart, three mullets in chief. The sinister panel is oblong; at the top are the initials D R S for Dame Rachael Skene and below them a 'skean' or dagger between three wolves' heads couped.

In 1634 Charles I granted a charter to Archibald Douglas, son and heir of Sir William Douglas of Cavers, and Rachael Skene, his wife, in conjunct fee, of certain properties including the town and lands of "Denum". (Reg Magni Sig Reg Scot 1984)

RCAHMS 1956, visited 1945.


Sbc Note

Visibility: This is an upstanding building.

Information from Scottish Borders Council.


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