Listed Building

The only legal part of the listing under the Planning (Listing Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997 is the address/name of site. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing – see 'About Listed Buildings' below for more information. The further details below the 'Address/Name of Site' are provided for information purposes only.

Address/Name of Site


Status: Removed


There are no additional online documents for this record.


Date Added
Date Removed:
Local Authority
Planning Authority
NT 34399 97170
334399, 697170

Removal Reason

The designation of this structure as a listed building has been removed as part of the Dual Designation 2A project. It will continue to be recognised as being of national importance through its designation as a scheduled monument (SM817).


16th century, surviving walls of rectangular-plan E tower (formerly 5-storey) with turnpike stair tower to NE angle; and ruins of late 14th century W tower (formerly 4-storey) with ruins of 16th and 17th century linking gatehouse range, within enclosure. Squared red sandstone and snecked rubble. String courses, gunloops and hoodmoulds to stair tower. Voussoired segmentally-arched openings and evidence of barrel vaults at ground floor. Outer courtyard wall to NW (landward) with wide-mouthed shot holes.

Statement of Special Interest

Property of Wemyss Estate Trustees. Scheduled Ancient Monument. The name 'Macduff's' derives from an 11th century association with the Thane of Fife, but nothing survives from that date. MacGibbon and Ross say that the building was also known as Kennoway Castle and Thanes Castle. East Wemyss village, including the castle, was purchased by Sir John Wemyss of West Wemyss in 1637 from Lord Colville of Culross, and in 1651 the lands of East and West Wemyss were united as one Barony of Wemyss. Fawcett says that MacDuff Castle "eventually had what were in essence two tower-houses, but there the towers were carefully linked into a unified composition by the gatehouse range that ran between them ... the appearance may have shown similarities with a 14th century courtyard castle of the type seen in St Andrews". The aforementioned gatehouse range was built by the Colvilles, with a great hall above which according to MacGibbon and Ross had "an open wooden roof, the marks of which are visible against the towers at each end", and later in the 16th century the outer courtyard wall with shot holes was added. The courtyard enclosed ranges of ancillary buildings, and a further lower courtyard on a seaward terrace. In 1666 the Countess of Sutherland (daughter of the 2nd Earl of Wemyss) sent her children here to escape the plague in Edinburgh.




About Listed Buildings

Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating sites and places at the national level. These designations are Scheduled monuments, Listed buildings, Inventory of gardens and designed landscapes and Inventory of historic battlefields.

We make recommendations to the Scottish Government about historic marine protected areas, and the Scottish Ministers decide whether to designate.

Listing is the process that identifies, designates and provides statutory protection for buildings of special architectural or historic interest as set out in the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997.

We list buildings which are found to be of special architectural or historic interest using the selection guidance published in Designation Policy and Selection Guidance (2019)

Listed building records provide an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building which has been identified by its statutory address. The description and additional information provided are supplementary and have no legal weight.

These records are not definitive historical accounts or a complete description of the building(s). If part of a building is not described it does not mean it is not listed. The format of the listed building record has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

The legal part of the listing is the address/name of site which is known as the statutory address. Other than the name or address of a listed building, further details are provided for information purposes only. Historic Environment Scotland does not accept any liability for any loss or damage suffered as a consequence of inaccuracies in the information provided. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing. Even if a number or name is missing from a listing address it will still be listed. Listing covers both the exterior and the interior and any object or structure fixed to the building. Listing also applies to buildings or structures not physically attached but which are part of the curtilage (or land) of the listed building as long as they were erected before 1 July 1948.

While Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating listed buildings, the planning authority is responsible for determining what is covered by the listing, including what is listed through curtilage. However, for listed buildings designated or for listings amended from 1 October 2015, legal exclusions to the listing may apply.

If part of a building is not listed, it will say that it is excluded in the statutory address and in the statement of special interest in the listed building record. The statement will use the word 'excluding' and quote the relevant section of the 1997 Act. Some earlier listed building records may use the word 'excluding', but if the Act is not quoted, the record has not been revised to reflect subsequent legislation.

Listed building consent is required for changes to a listed building which affect its character as a building of special architectural or historic interest. The relevant planning authority is the point of contact for applications for listed building consent.

Find out more about listing and our other designations at You can contact us on 0131 668 8914 or at


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Printed: 25/09/2020 08:40