Dingwall, Castle Street, Dingwall Castle

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Alternative Names Mote Of Dingwall; Dingwall, The Castle House
Canmore ID 12774
Site Number NH55NE 4
NGR NH 5536 5900
Former Region HIGHLAND
Datum OSGB36 - NGR

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Notes and Activities

Archaeological Notes

NH55NE 4.00 5532 5901

NH55NE 4.01 NH 55269 58939 dovecot
NH55NE 4.02 NH 5531 5902 monument to Roderick Maclennan

For the Castle House, in the grounds of which Dinwall Castle ruins lie, see
NH55NE 54 NH 55336 59026

(NH 5532 5899) Castle in ruins. Depicted as being on an isolated mound about 100 feet overall diameter, and about 40 feet diameter across the top.
Town plan of Dingwall,(scale 39 1/2 ins to 1 mile)
J Wood 1821.

Castle (Remains of) (A.T.)
OS 25" map, Ross-shire, 1st ed., (1876)

The Castle was surrounded by a deep ditch.
OSA 1792.

The remains of Dingwall Castle consist of one narrow underground vault and two masses of masonry above ground.
D MacGibbon and T Ross 1892.

The castle site was levelled in 1818. One of the corner towers of the Castle was transformed into a dovecot by Andrew, Bishop of Caithness, a keeper of the castle between 1507-16 A.D. and is still exists as one of the ruined fragments.
N Macrae 1923.

Dingwall Castle is referred to as the 'Mote of Dingwall' in 1488.
W Mc MacKenzie 1927.

Dingwall Castle is marked on a 12/13th century map in the Bodleian Library.
D MacDonald, A Polson and J Brown 1931.

The remains of this castle are situated in a private garden at NH 5532 5901 and consist of a small circular tower c.3.4 m. in diameter, standing to a height of 2.6 m., with walls 0.5 m. thick. Attached to the northeast side of the tower is a large block of masonry 3.2 m. wide and standing to a height of c.3.0 m, and on the north-west side of the tower project the remains of a wall c.1.5 m. long, c.7.0 m. to the west of the tower is a large mass of masonry covered with ivy, probably the remains of a wall. This stands to a height of c.3.0 m. but no other measurements could be taken with any degree of certainty. C.10.0 m. to the south-west of the tower is the entrance to a small underground barrel vault, measuring 5.0 m. in length, by 1.8 m. wide and 1.7 m. high. At a distance of c.2.0 m. back from the south enclosing garden wall the ground slopes down gently towards the wall forming a shallow ditch with a maximum depth of c.1.0 m. about 5.0 m. from the wall. This ditch, which looks the result of landscape gardening, extends from the east side of the carriage drive for a distance of c.8.0 m. before fading out, and the owner, Col. John W. Stevenson, believes it to indicate the course of the ditch which formerly surrounded the castle. The remainder of the garden is level with no indication of a motte. The dovecot is at NH 5526 5893. It is an octagonal unroofed tower of red sandstone c.3.7 m. diameter with walls 0.6 m. thick. It was probably of two storeys with a parapet top but thick ivy now obscures the top of the tower. Its present height is c.4 m. The ground floor has gun loops in three of the south facing sides, a fireplace and a doorway in the east side. A number of stone pigeon boxes have been built in to the sides of the building. The dovecot is probably later than the other remains.
Published Survey (25" 1904) to be amended by field surveyor.
Visited by OS (W D J) 17 April 1963.

(Location cited as NH 471 588). Motte noted at Dingwall.
P A Yeoman 1988.

Castle / motte - eroded, poor state - turfed mound left; houses built on top.
CFA/MORA Coastal Assessment Survey 1998.

Books and References

Coventry, M (2008) Castles of the Clans: the strongholds and seats of 750 Scottish families and clans, Musselburgh
Page(s): 149 Held at RCAHMS F.5.21.COV

MacDonald, Polson and Brown, D, A and J ({1931}) The book of Ross, Sutherland and Caithness, Orkney and Shetland: descriptive, historical and antiquarian notes, Dingwall
Page(s): 28-30 Held at RCAHMS D.6.4.MAC

MacGibbon and Ross, D and T (1887-92) The castellated and domestic architecture of Scotland from the twelfth to the eighteenth centuries, 5v Edinburgh
Page(s): Vol. 4, 390 Held at RCAHMS F.5.21.MAC

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