Ancient Monuments

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The Bower of Wandel, Tower.

A Scheduled Monument in Clydesdale East, South Lanarkshire

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Latitude: 55.5415 / 55°32'29"N

Longitude: -3.6638 / 3°39'49"W

OS Eastings: 295106

OS Northings: 628786

OS Grid: NS951287

Mapcode National: GBR 24VC.LC

Mapcode Global: WH5T5.PZJ6

Entry Name: The Bower of Wandel, Tower.

Scheduled Date: 28 February 2000

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM8775

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Secular: tower

Location: Lamington and Wandel

County: South Lanarkshire

Electoral Ward: Clydesdale East

Traditional County: Lanarkshire


The monument consists of the fragmentary remains of a late medieval tower, which stands on a rocky promontory projecting into the River Clyde. A former watercourse has scarped the slopes of the existing river-loop. On the approach side (NE), the promontory has been defended by an earthwork consisting of an outer ditch, a bank and an inner ditch.

Only the lowest portion of the tower survives with the ruined walls surviving to an average height of 2m. The outer facings of the walls have been much robbed and average about 2m in thickness. The springing of a vault on the internal NW wall is clearly visible and the bases of three internal-splayed windows survive. A gap in the walling on the SE may indicate a former entrance. In plan, masonry and architectural description, this structure is best comparable with a 15th - 16th century tower.

Tradition associates the site with James V and it is possible that the ruined walls that survive belong to the later medieval period. Nonetheless, this rocky promontory could well have been occupied by timber structures prior to this time. Wandel parish seems to have been divided into two portions from an early period.

The smaller, known as 'Quendal', belonged to the see of Glasgow about 1116 whilst the larger portion pertained to William Hertsheuede, sheriff of Lanark in 1225. It is doubtful whether the see of Glasgow would have established a caput within this area but the family who took their name from Hartside (the name of a nearby farm) may well have established an earthwork and timber castle at the 'Bower of Wandel'.

The area to be scheduled is irregular in shape, with maximum dimensions of 95m SW-NE and 65m transversely to include the remains of the tower, the earthworks, and an area around it, which has the potential for associated archaeology: as marked in red on the accompanying map extract.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

The monument is of national importance as the remains of a late-medieval tower house, which may possibly occupy the site of an earlier timber and earthwork castle. As such it may help provide an understanding of the Flemish and Anglo-Norman settlement of Upper Clydesdale. The archaeology of this monument has the potential to greatly increase our knowledge about the defences, domestic life and function of such monuments.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland



RCAHMS records the monument as NS 92 NE 2.


Irving, G. V. and Murray, A. (1864) The Upper ward of Lanarkshire described and delineated, 3v, Glasgow, Vol. 2, 219.

Tabraham, C. (1978) 'Norman settlement in Upper Clydesdale: recent archaeological fieldwork', Trans Dumfriesshire Galloway Natur Hist Antiq Soc, 3rd series, 53, 1977-8, 120.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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