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Bastle at Low Leam Farm

List Entry Summary

This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Bastle at Low Leam Farm

List entry Number: 1008269

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County:

District: Northumberland

District Type: Unitary Authority

Parish: Corsenside

National Park: NORTHUMBERLAND

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 31-Mar-1994

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 25035

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

Bastles are small thick-walled farmhouses in which the living quarters are situated above a ground floor byre. The vast majority are simple rectangular buildings with the byre entrance typically placed in one gable end, an upper door in the side wall, small stoutly-barred windows and few architectural features or details. Some have stone barrel vaults to the basement but the majority had a first floor of heavy timber beams carrying stone slabs. The great majority of bastles are solitary rural buildings, although a few nucleated settlements with more than one bastle are also known. Most bastles were constructed between about 1575 and 1650, although earlier and later examples are also known. They were occupied by middle-rank farmers. Bastles are confined to the northern border counties of England, in Cumbria, Northumberland and Durham. The need for such strongly defended farmsteads can be related to the troubled social conditions in these border areas during the later Middle Ages. Less than 300 bastles are known to survive, of which a large number have been significantly modified by their continuing use as domestic or other buildings. All surviving bastles which retain significant original remains will normally be identified as nationally important.

The bastle at Low Leam Farm survives in a very good state of preservation and is a good example of its type.

History

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Details

The bastle, a defended medieval farmhouse, is situated among farm buildings 12m to the north of the present farmhouse. The structure, composed of blocks of roughly squared stone, and surviving in original form to eaves level, is roughly rectangular in plan, measuring 9.4m by 5.6m within stone walls 1.2m thick. The basement, or byre, was entered through a doorway in the west gable; this is square headed and displays a relieving arch over the lintel and two draw bar tunnels. The doorways in the east and north walls are later additions. There is an original slit window in the south wall of the byre which has been blocked at a later date. The top stone course of the byre projects outwards in order to carry the heavy timbers which supported the upper storey. The upper storey was used as the main living area of the farm and access was gained through a door placed in the south wall, now blocked and only visible from a later farm building built against the south wall; also visible is a blocked slit window and an inscribed stone carrying the initials `M C' and a date thought to read `1602'. The walls of the bastle were raised in the 19th century and it has a modern roof. The monument is also a Grade II Listed Building.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Ramm, H G , Shielings and Bastles, (1970), 84
Ryder, P F, Bastles and Towers in Northumberland National Park, (1990), 13

National Grid Reference: NY 87634 86153

Map

Map
© Crown Copyright and database right 2017. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2017. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1008269 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 17-Dec-2017 at 05:24:55.

End of official listing