By Keith Durham
Within the yr 1296, Edward I of britain introduced a chain of vicious raids around the Anglo-Scottish Border in his try to annexe Scotland. The Scots retaliated and the 2 nations have been plunged into three hundred years of conflict during which the Borderland turned the frontline and raiding, or "reiving," inspired via either side, turned a lifestyle. Keith Durham examines the Border fortresses, starting from small, well-defended castles to enforcing tower homes, or "peles," and quite a few fortified farmhouses referred to as "bastles." He additionally investigates the various church buildings that have been bolstered opposed to assault and in occasions of hassle served as sanctuaries for his or her congregations.
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Additional resources for Strongholds of the border reivers: fortifications of the Anglo-Scottish Border, 1296-1603
In the west, Lord Wharton, of Solway Moss fame, launched a more modest diversionary invasion into the Scottish West March. It should be pointed out that these incursions were often carried out with the help of 'assured Scots', many of whom saw the advantage of a union by marriage with England and were willing to take up arms in support of their cause. Accompanying Somerset was a certain William Patten, who was appointed to administer martial law in the provost marshal's court. A shrewd observer with a fine eye for detail, Patten's account of the campaign has left us with a vivid idea of the impact of full-scale warfare across the Border region and the way border fortresses fared in the face of a concerted assault.
The adjoining smaller chamber was probably reserved for the laird's private use; perhaps a place where matters of a confidential nature could be discussed. The smaller east court did not contain any buildings and may well have served as a storage area or a garden. Smailholm has no well and drinking water must have been Ground Floor collected in rain barrels, or drawn from the millpond to the south-east. 1 by 9. 7m and stands 20m high over walls 2m thick. The walls were built of black dolerite rubble, whilst the quoins, dressings, windows and doorways have been fashioned from a deep-red sandstone.
They added that 'it will be great danger if the Scottes shall hereafter be able ... to invade those marches and remain any tyme in the same without repulse'. As a consequence, Acts of 1555 and 1584 specified that all castles and strongholds within 32km of the Border were to be put in order and any open Repentance Tower, Ecclefechan, Dumfries and Galloway. With panoramic views of the Solway Firth and the surrounding countryside, this 'watchtower of great height' was built in 1565 and served primarily as a signalling station.
Strongholds of the border reivers: fortifications of the Anglo-Scottish Border, 1296-1603 by Keith Durham