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Cessford Castle

Cessford Castle lies on the route of St Cuthbert's Way one of three nationally recognised long distant footpaths which cross the Border Region.

Cessford Castle History

Cessford Castle is one of the most important historic and architectural monuments in the Scottish Borders.  Built in around 1450 it is a substantial structure with massive defensive walls some 14 feet thick. 

It regularly suffered attack from the English forces and a particularly well documented account is provided by the English commander, the Earl of Surrey who, in 1523 during Henry VIII's policy of 'rough wooing', laid siege with a battery of eleven cannon. 

Sir Andrew Ker, Warden of the Marches to whom the stronghold belonged, subsequently handed over the Castle and the Earl of Surrey noted that, had the defence continued, he does not see how it could have been taken.  It was finally abandoned after the English burnt it in 1543 and 1544.

The Cessford Castle is one of only a small number of buildings from the period, which escaped entire destruction, and this probably is testament to its strong, defensible design. 

It was recorded in 1523 as the third strongest fortification in Scotland.  Much of the main tower remains today but the structure continues to deteriorate with no maintenance or protection having been undertaken for at least 50 years if at all. 

The Castle Today

The Cessford Castle is in private ownership and tours inside the castle’s remains are not advisable.

Cessford Castle Photos

Source: - Click to the images to enlarge
Cessford Castle
Cessford Castle by
Cessford Castle ruins
Cessford Castle entrance

Cessford Castle Map&Location

Directions: 5 Cessford Farm Cottages, Kelso, Scottish Borders TD5 8EG. Approximate Geographic Coordinates: 55.507778, -2.415933

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