Ancient Monuments

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Old Caberston, scooped settlement 310m east of

A Scheduled Monument in Tweeddale East, Scottish Borders

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Latitude: 55.6294 / 55°37'45"N

Longitude: -2.9984 / 2°59'54"W

OS Eastings: 337235

OS Northings: 637766

OS Grid: NT372377

Mapcode National: GBR 73HB.NV

Mapcode Global: WH7WC.XRCS

Entry Name: Old Caberston, scooped settlement 310m E of

Scheduled Date: 31 May 1971

Last Amended: 10 March 2016

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM3036

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Prehistoric domestic and defensive: scooped settlement

Location: Innerleithen

County: Scottish Borders

Electoral Ward: Tweeddale East

Traditional County: Peeblesshire


Probably 16th century in origin with later additions and alterations by Sir Robert Lorimer, 1916; Reginald Fairlie, 1926. Castellated mansion of asymmetrical composition forming open courtyard comprising restored 3-storey, rectangular-plan keep to SE with engaged 6-stage, circular-plan stair tower recessed to left (heightened); 2-storey with basement, 6-bay mansion house adjoined to left again with later storey above; engaged 3-storey, square-plan stair tower in re-entrant angle to left; asymmetrical, 3-storey with attic projection to outer left; lower 3-storey, 2-bay block recessed to outer right. Predominantly pink sandstone rubble with rubble dressings; squared and snecked tooled pink sandstone to later additions with sandstone ashlar dressings. String course and former cornice to principal range; predominantly modillioned eaves with crenellated parapets; moulded eaves to N wing; crowstepped gables. Chamfered surrounds to later openings (architraved in part); sandstone and timber mullions and transoms. Single storey, 3-bay ancillary structure (former electricity house?) to SE.

SW (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: asymmetrical fenestration throughout with single and bipartite windows. Projecting 3-storey keep to right of centre. Engaged stair tower recessed to left. Adjoining mansion house recessed to left with squat basement windows with rubble relieving arches; irregularly-spaced windows at ground with chamfered oriel to outer left; later attic storey with coat-of-arms; corbelled turret to outer left. 3-storey stair tower projecting to left; coat-of-arms to right. Full-height projection to outer left with architraved panelled door; tripartite window at 1st floor; crenellated parapet with corbelled bartizan to right; crowstepped gablehead to outer left. Lower 3-storey block adjoining keep recessed to right with roll-moulded surround to boarded timber door. Single storey, flat-roofed addition projecting to outer right.

NW (SIDE) ELEVATION: symmetrical block stepped out at ground with 5 bipartite windows; large bipartite window centred at 1st floor; corbelled, shallow canted window above; flanking double-height panels with large bipartite windows at ground; bipartite windows above.

NE (REAR) ELEVATION: irregular fenestration throughout. 4-storey principal projection at centre. Lower, 2-bay wing recessed to right. Flush, full-height range adjoined to right. 2-storey with attic, 3-bay range recessed to left of principal projection. Gabled projection to left with crowstepped gablehead; full-height bay recessed to left. Flush lower range adjoined to left. Single storey, flat-roofed addition to outer left.

SE (SIDE) ELEVATION: projecting crowstepped gable end to right with single storey, flat-roofed addition at ground; plain parapet to left. Keep recessed to left. Taller range recessed to left with engaged stair tower to right; full-height bay recessed to left with blocked door and window at ground; relieving arch in upper floor corbelled out above. Full-height wing recessed to left; corbelled bartizan to outer left.

Predominantly timber-framed leaded glazing (diamond-paned in part); some timber sash and case windows. Grey slate roof (flat roof in part); some crowstepped skews; corbelled skewputts. Coped sandstone ridge, apex and wallhead stacks; various circular cans.

INTERIOR: not seen 1999. Existing records show decorative floor tiling to vestibule. Turnpike stair in S tower; fireplace at ground. N block with wide turnpike stair from E (N tower); large rooms at ground and 1st floors with fireplaces (remains of); plain walls; boarded timber floors; flat ceilings. E block with remains of fireplace; chamfered window openings; flat ceiling. Vaulting and panelling removed by Burrell.

ANCILLARY STRUCTURE: single storey, 3-bay, rectangular-plan block with lean-to addition to side. Rubble with pink sandstone ashlar dressings; boarded timber addition. Rusticated quoins; blocked margins; flush cills. SW (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: 2-leaf boarded timber door at centre; single windows in flanking bays. Boarded timber door in lean-to addition recessed to outer right. Timber sash and case windows. Grey slate piended roof. Coped sandstone wallhead stacks. INTERIOR: not seen 1999.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

This monument is of national importance because it has an inherent potential to make a significant addition to the understanding of Iron-Age domestic settlement. This settlement retains good field characteristics, with several features visible as earthworks, and the interior appears little disturbed. Domestic remains and artefacts from such settlements have the potential to tell us about wider society at this time, how people lived, where they came from and who they had contacts with. Archaeological deposits may also provide information about the nature of the contemporary environment and its use by prehistoric farmers. Spatial analysis of this and other sites in the region can inform our understanding of patterns of landholding and the expansion of settlement. The loss of this site would affect our ability to appreciate and understand the prehistoric landscape and its inhabitants within the Tweed Valley.


Source: Historic Environment Scotland



NMRS drawings, Robert Lorimer, 1916. Armstrong's map, 1771 (marked as 'Huttonhall'). NEW STATISTICAL ACCOUNT (completed 1834, published 1845) p153. Ordnance Survey map, 1862 (evident). F H Groome ORDNANCE GAZETTEER (1883) p281. D MacGibbon & T Ross CASTELLATED AND DOMESTIC ARCHITECTURE OF SCOTLAND, Vol IV (1892) pp193-199. P Savage LORIMER AND THE EDINBURGH CRAFT DESIGNERS (1980) p50, p87, p121. SIR WILLIAM BURRELL (1982) pp16-23. C A Strang BORDERS & BERWICK: AN ILLUSTRATED ARCHITECTURAL GUIDE (1991) pp55-56. NMRS photographic records.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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