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Bamburgh Tower

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Bamborough 2, The Master of Bamburgh's Tower

In the civil parish of Bamburgh.
In the historic county of Northumberland.
Modern Authority of Northumberland.
1974 county of Northumberland.
Medieval County of Northumberland.

OS Map Grid Reference: NU17883495
Latitude 55.60790° Longitude -1.71766°

Bamburgh Tower has been described as a probable Pele Tower.

There are masonry footings remains.

This is a Grade 2 listed building protected by law*.


List of towers compiled in 1415 mentioned a tower belonging to the master of Bamburgh, the monk in charge of the cell of Augustinian canons who lived there. Part of the base of this tower can still be seen built in to the churchyard wall east of the tower. (Keys to the Past)

Churchyard wall and gateway east and south of Church of St. Aidan GV II Churchyard wall, gatepiers and gate. Medieval and C18. Squared stone and random rubble, ashlar piers, wrought-iron gates. East wall is largely of squared stone, c. 6 ft. high. A section c. 15 yards long, east of the church,has chamfered plinth and large medieval squared stone. This is said to be the remains of The Master of Bamburgh's tower. Gateway in south-east corner has square corniced gatepiers with ball finials. Gates have boss with decorative spearhead finials. (Listed Building Report)

In a list of towers compiled in 1460 {sic. should be 1415} mention is made of a tower belonging to the monks of Bamburgh. The base of this tower may still be plainly observed in a wall separating the churchyard from the house called Bamburgh Hall. It is about 33 feet in length, with masonry of a very solid character, and projects a short distance beyond the rest of wall into which it is built (Bateson 1893).
NU17883496. A portion of the wall on the east side of the churchyard is of large blocks of dressed masonry with a plinth course on the west side. The stretch of wall thus constructed is 10.0m long and 0.8m thick. There are no architectural features visible and no trace of foundations are to be seen in the garden to the east. The wall is 2.2m high (F1 EG 29-MAR-55). (PastScape)

The lower part of the west wall of a substantial medieval building, incorporated in the east wall of the churchyard of St Aidan's Church, has been identified as the 'Touris de Bambruigh' referred to in the 1415 list as belonging to the Master of Bamburgh (ie the master of the cell of Austin canons).
The north end of the surviving section of wall is more or less in line with the south wall of the chancel of the parish church. The wall is 10.1m long and stands 2.2m high, consisting of seven courses of pink and yellow sandstone ashlar (in some courses the different colours seem to alternate) above a chamfered plinth; the plinth does not appear to return at either end. This section of wall is set forward c.0.3m from the wall on either side, which appears to be of 18th century date; on the east side of the wall (towards the garden on Bamburgh Hall) there seems to have been extensive rebuilding or refacing and the earlier section is difficult to distinguish from the remainder. The thickness if the medieval section of wall is hard to determine, but is probably a little less than 1m. In its present condition the surviving wall seems a little thin to be part of a tower, although its east face may well have been cut back. It certainly looks of medieval date, but might be part of some monastic building other than the tower, such as existed at the Benedictine cells of Coquet Island and Farne (Ryder 1994-5). (Northumberland HER)
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:20:09

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