MHG10768 - Borve Castle


No summary available.

Type and Period (1)

  • CASTLE (Medieval - 1058 AD? to 1559 AD?)

Protected Status

Full Description

NC72516408 Borve Castle (NR) (remains) OS 6"map, (1964)

Remains of castle of Borve or Farr, lying on precipitous promontory, joined to mainland by a narrow neck, across which a rampart, 1.5m high, with flanking ditches, has been drawn. The site is also approachable from NE by sea, and here a single ditch, 4.7m wide and 1.8m deep protects it. Only footings and courtyard wall remain but outline of a range of rectangular buildings, with walls 2.1m thick, can be traced on west. The promontory slopes down towards seaward end where there are circular and rectangular hollows, probably marking site of well and more foundations. The castle is traditionally said to have been built by Torquill, a Norwegian, and subsequently to have been residence of MacKays of Farr, until 1565 or 1655 when it was besieged and demolished by Earl of Sutherland.
Orig Paroc Scot 1855; RCAHMS 1911, visited 1909; Visited by OS (J L D) 27 April 1960.

The site was Scheduled in 1961.

The remains of Borve Castle are as described by previous authorities. The wall footings are mainly turf-covered, but where wall faces are exposed shell mortar can be seen.
Revised at 1:10,000. Visited by OS (N K B) 14 August 1978.

The bank across neck of promontorry is almost entirely natural outcrop although it may have been artificially scarped and built up. The ditch across seaward end of promontory has a slight bank on either side. The keep itself, which is possibly earlier than is generally supposed, is built of dressed blocks bonded by lime mortar, it has been small, plain and square, occupying most of width of promontory but leaving space for a path to pass on its E side. Behind and adjoining it is a short range of buildings in same style of masonry.
R G Lamb 1980.

The site is included in the Atlas of Hillforts of Britain and Ireland online database. See link below to site entry. <1>

The Scheduling was amended by Historic Environment Scotland with effect from 26/06/2023. <2>

Sources/Archives (7)



Grid reference Centred NC 7250 6410 (123m by 103m) (2 map features)
Map sheet NC76SW
Geographical Area SUTHERLAND
Civil Parish FARR

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Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

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