SEAFIELD TOWER

Seafield Tower is a sixteenth century, ā€˜Lā€™ shaped tower house built by the Multrare family and which later passed into the hands of the Archbishop of Glasgow. Originally served by various support buildings contained within a fortified courtyard, the castle is now a ruin.

History

 

Seafield was granted to Robert Multrare by James II of Scotland in 1443. The Multrare family seat was at Moutray Hill near Edinburgh broadly south from Seafield across the Firth of Forth. In an age where travel via water was quicker and easier that movement along land, it is not surprising they decided to build a Tower House at Seafield although work did not start on the structure until the early sixteenth century.

 

Originally five storeys high, it was constructed in an 'L' shape configuration using local red sandstone. The Tower would have had a vaulted storage area on the ground floor, a Great Hall on the first floor and the upper levels would have been the lord's accommodation. A plan of 1774 suggests ancillary buildings - including a brewhouse, bakehouse and stables - were located in an enclosure to the west of the Tower. The norm would be for these have been protected by a barmkin (curtain wall) but unfortunately any evidence of such a structure has now been lost due to coastal erosion.

 

In 1631 the Seafield estate was sold to James Law, Archbishop of Glasgow. After his death the following year, it passed through various owners ultimately ending up with the Methven family. They abandoned it as a residence in the early eighteenth century and the tower was left to drift into ruin. Following a storm in January 2013 a significant part of the north-west corner of the tower collapsed.

 

Bibliography

 

CANMORE (2016). Seafield Tower. Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland.

Cruden, S (1960). The Scottish Castle. Edinburgh.

Dargie, R.L.C (2004). Scottish Castles and Fortifications. GW Publishing, Thatcham.

Millar, A.H (1895). Fife: Pictorial and Historical: Its people, burghs, castles and mansions. Cupar, Edinburgh.

Simpson, W.D (1959). Scottish Castles - An introduction to the Castles of Scotland. HM Stationery Office, Edinburgh.

South Carolina Historical Society (1904). The Moultries. South Carolina Historical and Genealogical Magazine.

Tabraham, C (2000). Scottish Castles and Fortifications. Historic Scotland, Haddington.

Tranter, N (1962). The fortified house in Scotland. Edinburgh.

What's There?

Seafield Tower has suffered from coastal erosion and today only part of the structure still stands. The remains date from the sixteenth century. The site offers good views over the Firth of Forth.

Getting There

Seafield Tower is found on the Fife Coastal Path south of Kirkcaldy. There is a car park accessed off Seafield Road which connects directly to the footpath to the castle.

Car Parking

KY1 1SJ

56.094380N 3.160591W

Seafield Tower

No Postcode

56.084136N 3.159329W