Keys to the Past

Old Town bastle (Allendale)

Byre doorway in the western bastle at Old Town, Allendale. Photo by Peter Ryder.
Byre doorway in the western bastle at Old Town, Allendale. Photo by Peter Ryder.

The northern farm at Old Town has a three-part range of farm buildings with a farmhouse at the centre. The buildings at both ends of the range are bastles and the farmhouse seems to be 18th century and later.

Of the western bastle the only original parts are the west end (1.3m thick) and part of the north wall (1m thick), the upper parts are 19th century additions, but the byre doorway is still in position. The original walls are made of exceptionally massive masonry blocks and this has sometimes led to it being regarded as a Roman building.

The eastern bastle is better preserved and seems to have its west wall incorporated into the farmhouse. The walls of this building are different in character to the western bastle and has been built of courses of large roughly-shaped stone alternating with small coursed rubble. This mixture may suggest it was reusing material from an earlier building. The walls are between 0.85m and 1m thick and the byre doorway stands in the east end. Some of the small openings may be original whilst others seem to have been enlarged and one at the top of the east gable suggests there may have been an attic. The buildings are all Grade II Listed Buildings protected by law.

Reference number:N7286
Historical period: Post Medieval (1540 to 1901)
Legal status:Listed Building
Event(s):PHOTOGRAPHIC SURVEY, Towers and Bastles in Northumberland 1995; P RYDER

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See also:
Source of Reference
Local History of Allendale


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Please note that this information has been compiled from a number of different sources. Durham County Council and Northumberland County Council can accept no responsibility for any inaccuracy contained therein. If you wish to use/copy any of the images, please ensure that you read the Copyright information provided.