Bastle, 100m south-west of Ray Cottages


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1011107

Date first listed: 19-Sep-1969

Date of most recent amendment: 02-Dec-1993


Ordnance survey map of Bastle, 100m south-west of Ray Cottages
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2019. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

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 - 1011107 .pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 22-Jan-2019 at 18:28:55.


The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Northumberland (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Kirkwhelpington

National Grid Reference: NY 96903 85765


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.

Although the bastle at Ray Cottages is now a ruin, the lower portions survive well and display several typical features. It will contribute to any study of the nature of settlement in the Border area during the turbulent 16th and 17th centuries.


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


The monument includes a medieval defended farmhouse or bastle, situated on a raised site within the grounds of Ray Castle. The structure, constructed of large roughly squared stone, is rectangular in plan and measures 8.3m by 6.4m externally. The walls which are 1.4m thick stand to a maximum height of 2.2m. There is a doorway in the east gable giving access to the basement. The first floor, of which there is now no trace, was supported on stone corbels which are visible in the west gable and the north and south walls.

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.


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

Legacy System number: 21003

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Ramm, H G , Shielings and Bastles, (1970), 89

End of official listing