Bastle at Grandy's Knowe


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1016812

Date first listed: 07-Jul-1999


Ordnance survey map of Bastle at Grandy's Knowe
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This copy shows the entry on 18-Jan-2019 at 03:29:37.


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

District: Northumberland (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Bardon Mill


National Grid Reference: NY 78123 67387


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 of the later Middle Ages, which in these border areas lasted until (indeed after) the union of the English and Scottish Crowns in 1603. 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 Grandy's Knowe is reasonably well preserved despite significant loss of fabric, and retains significant archaeological deposits. Taken together with other important medieval and post medieval buildings in the vicinity, it will add to our knowledge of medieval and post-medieval settlement and activity in the area.


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


The monument includes the remains of a bastle, a form of defended farmhouse, situated among a group of farm buildings on the edge of a north facing escarpment. The bastle, which is roofless, is rectangular in shape and measures 9.15m by 6.7m externally with walls of large roughly squared blocks up to 1.3m thick. The walls of the bastle stand to an average height of 1.5m. The eastern wall and the eastern end of the north wall stand considerably higher as they have been incorporated into the adjacent mid-18th century farmhouse. There is an original doorway, now blocked, through the centre of the west gable giving access into the ground floor basement. There are opposing gaps through the north and south walls which are thought to be additional doorways inserted into the bastle at a later date. The bastle is Listed Grade II along with the adjacent farmhouse.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.


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

Legacy System number: 32715

Legacy System: RSM


NY76NE 71,

End of official listing