1545; extensively restored 1734. 2?-storey, 3-bay, rectangular-plan tower-house with much later timber lean-to to rear; later altered from laird's house to dairy then store. Local whinstone rubble with yellow sandstone dressings. Roll-moulded surround to blind original window. Plain skewless gables.
SE (NOW PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: narrow entrance door to centre with chamfered arrises and re-used lintel from original door inscribed ANNO DOM(INI) 1545; former window, now door to left bay; window to right bay with lintel inscribed 17 ILG [?S] 34. To 1st floor, 3 regularly placed later bays, now blind.
SW ELEVATION: gable-end with original roll-mould surround window to 1st floor left; 18th century attic window to extreme left near eaves; wallhead stack surmounting.
NW (REAR) ELEVATION: ground floor elevation with blocked gun-port to centre and former window to right bay concealed by later timber lean-to. To 1st floor, blind window to centre. Remains of gun-port to extreme left.
NE ELEVATION: gabled end with later gabled farm building concealing ground floor of elevation; small window to upper right of 1st floor; blind gablehead above.
Original glazing plan and window apertures now lost, but original window to 1st floor of SW gable; later windows now blind. Pitched grey blue slate roof with metal ridge tiles; cast-iron rooflight to main elevation. Painted cast-iron rainwater goods. 18th century rubble gablehead stacks without cans; SW stack to left of main gable.
INTERIOR: remodelled (basement vault and original stair removed) and in use as a store; 2 separate rooms to ground floor, right-hand room with large fireplace to NE gable with inset aumbry; divided room to 1st floor with 1734 fireplace in NW gable.
Statement of Special Interest
The name of the tower and farm is taken from the Anglo-Norman settlers Wink, or Vink, who originally had the property. In 1536, the Dikesons (later Dickson) owned the lands, with William Dickson, a Peebles burgess, believed to have had the tower house built. The property changed hands many times. A John Little, tenant in Foulage was noted; indeed he (and his wife - name unknown) is commemorated in the inscribed lintel above the right-hand window on the principal elevation. It then passed to Adam Little, and by 1767 Stevenson of Smithfield. The property was not in a good state of repair and little had been done to the lands. In 1792 the lands were 'mostly in a state of nature' and for sale via public advertisement. The estate was bought by John Anstruther of Airdet who passed it to his grandson Major John Anstruther Macgowan, who died leading a party of 93rd Highlanders at Sebastopol. The heirs sold the estate in 1857 to the London artist Robert Thorburn for ?7800. This tower house stands immediately behind the present farmhouse (listed separately). Originally, the tower comprised of a vaulted basement, 1st floor hall and a chamber floor. The original entrance and stair plans were lost but inscribed lintels (17 IL 34 and ANNO DOM 1545) and gun loops still survive. The tower was incorporated into the farm steading by the middle of the 19th century; it has since been in use as a dairy and then a store.