Scheduled Monument

Corse CastleSM2414

Status: Designated


Where documents include maps, the use of this data is subject to terms and conditions (


Date Added
Last Date Amended
Supplementary Information Updated
Secular: castle
Local Authority
NJ 54876 7393
354876, 807393


The monument consists of Corse Castle, a defensive residence of sixteenth-century date. Built by William Forbes in 1581, the castle is of unusual layout, combining aspects of the "Z" and "L-plan" into one design. The long elevations of the L-shape lie S and W with a round tower projecting from the NW angle. The overall dimensions of the castle are 11.25m E- W by 13.1m N-S over walls 1.2m thick. The dressings are of granite and the walls of granite rubble are complete to wall head level in the S portion of the building. The NW tower and abutting walls are reduced to a height of 1.1m and have been capped. There are corbelled turrets on the three angles of the E side. A stair turret projecting from the centre of the S wall would have served as a watch tower. The entrance which has an inscribed lintel is in the re-entrant angle of the N wall. Above this are two blank panels with mouldings, a square one beneath an ogee shaped one. Although the internal arrangements have been destroyed it appears that the SW portion contained a vaulted cellar. The hall was probably on the first floor in the SW portion of the castle. The S part of the castle has had four storeys and a garret above a partly vaulted ground floor. Several fire-places in the E wall of the E wing indicate the location of private chambers. Defence was a necessity judging by the bar holes on windows, numerous shot holes, some with lozenge patterns protecting the entrance and the S stair turret. The area to be scheduled is irregular, measuring a maximum of 30m E-W by 35m N-S, as shown in red on the accompanying map.

Statement of National Importance

The monument is of national importance as a fine example of a dwelling designed as a statement expressing wealth, security and social status. In addition it retains architectural details combining traditional defensive features with an interest in surface decoration characteristic of the sixteenth century. Although part of a large group of defensive houses built by the minor nobility during the later Middle Ages it is of individual ground plan. As well as providing architectural evidence of Scotland's past, it has the potential to provide scientific information retrievable through excavation which may increase our understanding of the social structure, domestic occupation, construction methods and material culture of those who built and inhabited the castle during the late medieval period in Scotland.



The monument is RCAHMS number NJ 50 NW 2.


MacGibbon D and Ross T 1887-92, "Castellated and Domestic Architecture in Scotland', Vol. 2, 265.

About Scheduled Monuments

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.

Scheduling is the process that identifies, designates and provides statutory protection for monuments and archaeological sites of national importance as set out in the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979.

We schedule sites and monuments that are found to be of national importance using the selection guidance published in Designation Policy and Selection Guidance (2019)

Scheduled monument records provide an indication of the national importance of the scheduled monument which has been identified by the description and map. The description and map showing the scheduled area is the legal part of the scheduling. The statement of national importance and additional information provided are supplementary. These records are not definitive historical or archaeological accounts or a complete description of the monument(s).

The format of scheduled monument records has changed over time. Earlier records will usually be brief. Some information will not have been recorded and the map will not be to current standards. Even if what is described and what is mapped has changed, the monument is still scheduled.

Scheduled monument consent is required to carry out certain work, including repairs, to scheduled monuments. Applications for scheduled monument consent are made to us. We are happy to discuss your proposals with you before you apply and we do not charge for advice or consent. More information about consent and how to apply for it can be found on our website at

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