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Stonehaugh 'Tower'

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Stonehouse; Staingarthsyde

In the civil parish of Nicholforest.
In the historic county of Cumberland.
Modern Authority of Cumbria.
1974 county of Cumbria.
Medieval County of Cumberland.

OS Map Grid Reference: NY46308041
Latitude 55.11523° Longitude -2.84334°

Stonehaugh 'Tower' has been described as a certain Bastle.

There are masonry ruins/remnants remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


Stonehaugh Tower: the remains of C16 pele, 35' x 24' externally, with a loop-hold in each wall. Only the southern and eastern walls remain (1927) (Curwen, 1928). Stonehouse Tower (NY 46384) Remains as described by Curwen. Although it is now called 'tower' the remains suggest that it was a bastle (Ramm et al). This probable bastle, of no known local name except 'The Tower', has dimensions as stated and stands on the edge of a level arable field. The 1.4m wide south and east walls of block and pinning construction stand to a maximum height of 3.0m and show an internal rebate line for the upper floor at 2.4m. There is an open loophole in the east wall, but the opening in the south wall is a simple recess 0.5m deep. The foundations of the north and west arms are turf-covered and overgrown, as is the interior. A stone-built lean-to barn stands against the east wall (Field Investigators Comments–F1 JRL 20-AUG-79). (PastScape)

Stonehouse Tower medieval bastle is one of a number of bastles located close to the Scottish border. As such it will contribute greatly to our knowledge and understanding of the wider border settlement and economy during the medieval period.
The monument includes the upstanding and buried remains of a medieval bastle known as Stonehouse Tower. It is located on the flood plain 140m east of Liddel Water, which here forms the boundary between England and Scotland, and is constructed of roughly squared and roughly coursed rubble, for the most part with uniform quoins. The bastle measures approximately 10.7m by 8.7m with walls 1.3m thick. The south east and south west walls survive up to about 3.6m high and contain two narrow vent slits and a square recess thought to have been used as a cupboard. The south west end wall has the remains of a corbel which may have supported a hearth on the upper floor. Only the foundations and lower course of the north east and north west walls survive. (Scheduling Report)

The floor plan dimensions are superficially more like those of a pele tower than that a bastle, which may be the reason for Curwen calling this a pele tower (although the bastle was a less known building in Curwen time), but the date makes it clear this was a bastle, although possibly built in a somewhat antiquated style.
Possible marked as 'Staingarthsyde' on 1590 map, although the map maker may have confused the Stonehaugh name with nearby Stonegarthside.
Salter describes it as a tower, shown on a map of 1590, and the seat of Robert Forest, but this was Stonegarthside.
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

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Sources of information, references and further reading
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:21:32

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