Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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Hirendean Castle

A Scheduled Monument in Midlothian South, Midlothian

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Latitude: 55.7492 / 55°44'57"N

Longitude: -3.1198 / 3°7'11"W

OS Eastings: 329808

OS Northings: 651217

OS Grid: NT298512

Mapcode National: GBR 61NY.CX

Mapcode Global: WH6TM.1RNF

Entry Name: Hirendean Castle

Scheduled Date: 17 February 1993

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM5608

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Secular: castle

Location: Temple

County: Midlothian

Electoral Ward: Midlothian South

Traditional County: Midlothian


The monument consists of the remains of Hirendean Castle, a small keep of 16th-century date.

The building is situated at the base of the Moorfoot Hills. Only the S wall and part of the W gable remain upstanding. These portions indicate the building had at least three storeys, the lowest of which was vaulted. Traces of the N wall survive, though most of it has fallen into an amorphous pile.

The overall dimensions of the castle appear to have been approximately 12m E-W by 8m N-S. The masonry is composed of irregularly-coursed rubble, the long and short quoins are undressed. There are traces of out building to the S of the castle and small field enclosures to the N and W.

The area to be scheduled is irregular, measuring a maximum of 130m E- W by 90m N-S, to include the castle and an area where further related features are likely to survive, as shown in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance because of its longstanding relationship with the Abbey of Newbattle: the lands of 'Herringden' belonged to the Abbey of Newbattle. Eventually they passed to the Earl of Lothian, Lord Newbattle. The ownership was confirmed in 1620 by a charter to Robert, Earl of Lothian including 'Herendene cum fortalico'. As an example of a reasonably well documented building, it has the potential, through a combination of research and excavation, to increase our understanding of late Medieval defensive architecture, settlement history, domestic activity and pre-improvement land use and tenure during the period of its construction and use.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS records the monument as NT 25 SE 2.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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