Scheduled Monument

Coldingham Priory, claustral remainsSM383

Status: Designated


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

The legal document available for download below constitutes the formal designation of the monument under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979. The additional details provided on this page are provided for information purposes only and do not form part of the designation. Historic Environment Scotland accepts no liability for any loss or damages arising from reliance on any inaccuracies within this additional information.


Date Added
Last Date Amended
Crosses and carved stones: tombstone, Ecclesiastical: burial ground, cemetery, graveyard; cloisters; precincts; priory
Local Authority
Scottish Borders
NT 90407 65940
390407, 665940


The monument consists of the known site of the conventual buildings around the cloister of Coldingham Benedictine Priory, and an area likely to have been occupied by a number of the outlying monastic buildings to the east of the church and cloister.

Since the priory of Coldingham was unique in Scotland in having the cloister against the flank of the monastic choir rather than the nave, the main nucleus of conventual buildings was further east in relation to the church than was usually the case. The walls of the refectory (traditionally known as 'Edgar's Walls') still partly stand to the south of the monastic choir, and parts of the east range have been located through excavation to the south-east of the monastic choir.

The area over which scheduling is now extended was probably originally occupied by a number of those buildings most commonly associated with the area to the east of the church and cloister, including the infirmary, and perhaps also the residence of the prior.

The monument was first scheduled in 1937, at which time the area scheduled was closely limited to areas to the south and west of the upstanding remains of the church, where it was assumed that the main core of conventual buildings and the nave of the priory church was likely to be. It is now considered important to extend the scheduling to cover those areas that would have been occupied by the monastic buildings customarily located to the east of the main conventual complex. The area now to be scheduled is an irregular polygon with extreme measurements of 150m from east to west and 67m from north to south.

Statement of National Importance

The monument is of national importance for encompassing the existing and potential remains of a uniquely located conventual complex. The archaeological potential of the area over which scheduling is now extended for clarifying our understanding of the wider complex is particularly high.



Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Berwickshire, 'Inventory of Berwickshire', 1915, 35-43.

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 (see ‘legal documents’ above) showing the scheduled area is the designation of the monument under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979. The statement of national importance and additional information provided are supplementary and provided for general information purposes only. Historic Environment Scotland accepts no liability for any loss or damages arising from reliance on any inaccuracies within the statement of national importance or additional information. 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

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


Coldingham Priory, south transept arch, looking southeast during daytime on a cloudy day

Printed: 21/05/2024 13:49