Scottish Castles Association

Preserving the Past for the Future

Isle Tower (Wigtown) - Past and Present

Situated in the small harbour town of the Isle of Whithorn, this little tower can claim to be the most southerly castle in Scotland (the most northerly being Muness in Shetland).

Isle Tower past
Isle Tower past - Ladies in well-laundered blouses pose above the now drained millpond

Nigel Tranter avows that this could be the latest tower in Scotland (citing a panel of 1674) but this is open to challenge and the panel could be of a later date. Certainly it has been much altered (particularly in 1830) and even up and until the present day.

It is of the typical L-plan with a stair-tower in the re-entrant. The two corbelled turrets have had their tops trimmed to fit under a later slated roof which lost its crow stepping in the process.

Isle Tower present
Isle Tower today - truncated turrets and roof results in a somewhat stumpy appearance

The tower lost much of its setting when the pond of the water-powered grain mill was drained.

Article by SCA member Brian McGarrigle.

Added: 01 Sep 2015 Updated: 01 Sep 2015
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