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Newbiggin Bastle, Hollinghill

In the civil parish of Hollinghill.
In the historic county of Northumberland.
Modern Authority of Northumberland.
1974 county of Northumberland.
Medieval County of Northumberland.

OS Map Grid Reference: NZ03629412
Latitude 55.24113° Longitude -1.94440°

Newbiggin Bastle, Hollinghill has been described as a Bastle although is doubtful that it was such.

There are masonry ruins/remnants remains.


Newbiggin Farmhouse may have its origins in the late C16 or early C17. One of its walls is 1.3m thick and some have claimed it is a bastle. Even though the building has been examined closely it has not been possible to confirm this yet. (Keys to the Past)

Newbiggin Farm lies in a fairly remote location on the north side of the Font valley, above the Fontburn Reservoir. The house is rather surprisingly listed in Ramm et al 1970 as 'including a partition wall 4ft thick, now partly masked by a chimney breast, which is said to have been the end wall of a bastle'. The house is of four irregular bays, all two storeyed, but with the western bay considerably lower than the remainder. The wall in question is 1.3m thick and forms the west end of the taller three-bay part. No old features are exposed and there are no clear indications of the wall, or of bastle period fabric, externally. A set of quoins further east, in the upper half of the wall only, seem to relate to the 18th century(?) heightening of the eastern two bays of the range (which are set at a slightly skew angle to the western part) before the third bay was heightened. On the north, what may be an earlier quoin facing in the opposite direction (ie forming the north east angle of a building on the site of the western bay) is visible below the quoining in the upper part of the wall (Ryder 1994-5). (Northumberland HER)

The location is entirely consistant with a possible bastle and the available historic mapping evidence can not either confirm or deny this as a possible bastle site. However, the fact that Peter Ryder, the most experienced of bastle building historians, is uncertain about the site is important.
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:20:10

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