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- Category: A
- Date Added: 20/07/1972
- Local Authority: Dumfries And Galloway
- Planning Authority: Dumfries And Galloway
- Burgh: Stranraer
National Grid Reference
- NGR: NX 6090 60821
- Coordinates: 206090, 560821
Circa 1510. 3-storey and attic, 3-bay L-plan tower house; advanced stair tower to NW; caphouse. Attic addition of circa 1600, with N and S walls built on original parapet; 1821 remodelling included arched windows to upper 2 floors when property converted to town jail to light cells and access passages. Rubble; ashlar dressings. Red sandstone quoins; long and short surrounds to openings; castellated parapet.
N (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: central entrance; timber door; empty panel frame aligned above; small opening to right; small opening at 1st floor; single windows at 2nd floor and attic. Splayed gunloop at ground in bay to left; small opening above; single windows at 1st, 2nd and 3rd floors. Birdcage bellcote surmounts stack at parapet. 2 small windows to stair tower to outer right.
W ELEVATION: regular fenestration to stair tower; regular fenestration at centre, excluding attic (window to 2nd floor infilled); small flanking openings to centre window at 1st floor.
S (REAR) ELEVATION: central single window at 1st floor; 3 single windows at 2nd floor; 3 pairs of window at attic.
INTERIOR: 2 tunnel-vaulted rooms at ground floor; gunloops to S and E walls of E room; recess to S wall of W room. Off turnpike stair to left, narrow room, probably a private chamber. Large 1st floor vaulted room; fireplace to N reduced in width. Narrow room to 2nd floor converted to passage in 1821 remodelling to serve 2 cells to S; 3rd cell entered directly from stair; tunnel-vaults and iron-plated doors to all cells. Passage to attic, leads to 2 tunnel-vaulted cells. Stair access to flat roof.
Statement of Special Interest
Built for Ninian Adair of Kinhilt. The Adairs of Kinhilt were a family with Irish origins who had arrived in Scotland in the 13th century, and already had considerable authority within Chapel. W McIlwraith noted in 1875, "So closely is it surrounded by other buildings that its antique baronial appearance is completely hidden." The castle was restored and converted to a visitor centre in 1988-90.
(Previously a scheduled monument, descheduled 2005)
W McIlwraith THE VISITORS GUIDE TO WIGTOWNSHIRE (1875), p99; F Groome ORDNANCE GAZETTEER OF SCOTLAND Vol VI (1882), p405; D MacGibbon and T Ross THE CASTELLATED AND DOMESTIC ARCHITECTURE OF SCOTLAND (1887-92), pp511-513; Photograph (Stranraer Library/Gwa31) circa 1900; RCAHMS INVENTORY FOR COUNTY OF WIGTOWN (1912), pp158-159; Sir A N Agnew GUIDE TO WIGTOWNSHIRE (1928), p130; EP Dennison Torrie and Russel Coleman HISTORIC STRANRAER (1995), pp15, 25, 42-3, 51-3; J Gifford DUMFRIES AND GALLOWAY (1996), pp533-4; RCAHMS TOLBOOTHS AND TOWN-HOUSES: CIVIC ARCHITECTURE IN SCOTLAND TO 1833 (1996), p192.
Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for the designation of buildings, monuments, gardens and designed landscapes and historic battlefields. We also advise Scottish Ministers on the designation of historic marine protected areas.
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