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Welton tower house

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: Welton tower house

List entry Number: 1016868

Location

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

County:

District: Northumberland

District Type: Unitary Authority

Parish: Horsley

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 24-Nov-1999

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: 32723

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

Tower houses are a type of defensible house particularly characteristic of the borderlands of England and Scotland. Virtually every parish had at least one of these buildings. At many sites the tower comprised only one element of a larger house, with at least one wing being attached to it. These wings provided further domestic accommodation, frequently including a large hall. If it was incorporated within a larger domestic residence, the tower itself could retain its defensible qualities and could be shut off from the rest of the house in times of trouble. Tower houses were being constructed and used from at least the 13th century to the end of the 16th century. They provided prestigious defended houses permanently occupied by the wealthier or aristocratic members of society. As such they were important centres of medieval life. The need for such secure buildings relates to the unsettled and frequently war-like conditions which prevailed in the Borders throughout much of the medieval period. Around 200 examples of tower houses have been identified of which over half were elements of larger houses. All surviving tower houses retaining significant medieval remains will normally be identified as nationally important.

The tower house at Welton survives well and retains significant archaeological deposits and many original architectural features. Taken together with the adjacent medieval manor house, it is thought to be one of the best combinations of manor house and tower in the county. Its importance is enhanced by its association with the adjacent medieval village.

History

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

Details

The monument includes the remains of a tower house of 15th century date. It is located within a farm complex, but was originally on the street line at the eastern end of the medieval village of Welton. The medieval village, field system and fishponds are the subject of a separate scheduling. The tower was created in the late 14th or early 15th century by the conversion of the west wing of an earlier, but still occupied, manor house. Both the tower house and the adjacent manor house are Listed Grade II*. The stonework of the original, steeply pitched western gable of the former wing, from which it was converted, is visible in the west wall of the tower. The tower, which is square in shape and measures 7m externally, stands three storeys high and is roofless. It has a vaulted basement which was clearly a later addition. The basement was lit by two small square windows through the south wall, the most westerly one of which has been altered to provide a doorway. A small, now blocked, opening through the east wall has been obscured by the insertion of the later tunnel vaulted roof. The first floor contains a low doorway through its northern wall with a projecting stone spout immediately to the west and a small ornate window through the eastern wall. Both the north and east wall of the second floor of the tower contain a square headed window. Part of the parapet which surmounted the tower is visible at its south western corner. The metalled farm yard area immediately to the north of the north wall of the tower is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath this feature is included.

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

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Ryder, P F, Towers and Bastles in Northumberland: A Survey, (1995), 102-4
Tolan-Smith, C, Landscape Archaeology in Tynedale: Chapter 5, (1997), 53-67
Other
NZ06NE 19,

National Grid Reference: NZ 06543 67592

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 - 1016868 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 21-Nov-2017 at 10:38:56.

End of official listing