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Stamfordham Vicars Tower

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
Stamfordham Vicarage; Turris de Stanwardham

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

OS Map Grid Reference: NZ07667195
Latitude 55.04213° Longitude -1.88142°

Stamfordham Vicars Tower has been described as a certain Pele Tower.

There are no visible remains.


A list of 1415 mentions the Vicar's tower at Stamfordham (Bates 1891).
There are no visible remains of a tower in, or around, the present vicarage (NZ 07667195), and no local tradition of one survives (F1 RWE 12-AUG-68).
The Swinburnes built a tower at Stamfordham before 1460, almost certainly for the vicar. The present vicarage is a Tudor building with 18th century modifications, but much older vaulted cellars. These may be the last remains of a tower. Alternatively, the church tower, which has no outside door and from which the ground falls steeply, may have been the vicar's pele (Dodds 1999). (PastScape)

There a couple of examples of church towers which were residences but generally vicars residences were separate buildings and in the context of the 1415 list it is most unlikely the turris de Stanwardham was the church tower. Most probably a modest three storey solar block and most probably on the site now occupied by the Old Vicarage.
In an appendix on bastles in Castellarium Anglicanum (vol. 1 p. lxviii) David King suggests a bastle at Stamfordham, listed by Mr Dixon, can be identified with this site. King is incorrect in this as Dixon refers to Widdrington House.
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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:20:09

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