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Historic England Research Records

Monument Number 18060

Hob Uid: 18060
Location :
County Durham
County Durham
Hunstanworth
Grid Ref : NY9488449005
Summary : The remains of a pele tower, situated in the churchyard of St James's Church. The tower, which is probably 16th century in date, is visible as the lower courses of a rectangular building with maximum measurements of 15 metres east to west by 12 metres north to south. The remains of the collapsed upper storeys are visible as spread material 1-3 metres wide on all sides. The walls, bonded with clay, stand to a maximum height of 1.5 metres and are at least 1 metre thick. The vaulted basement of the tower house fell in 1883, but some of the springing on the south side at the western end remains in situ.
More information : (NY 9487 4900) Tower (NR) (Remains of) (NAT). (1)

At the western end of the churchyard are the ruined remains of the
basement of a small pele tower, oblong in shape, 42 ft long by 22 1/2 ft broad and standing east and west, which had an arched or vaulted roof, which remained in perfect condition until it fell in 1883. It was probably used for secreting goods and cattle during the Scottish raids. Remains of hooks are visible on the inside of the walls. (2)

The remains of the tower, as described by authority 2, consist of
densely overgrown foundations and quantities of fallen masonry. The walling of rubble, is 0.6m thick and retains a maximum height of 3.5m at the NW angle. The "remains of hooks" are not visible but may be beneath the debris. (3)

Condition unchanged from report of 20-JUN-1957. (4)

Existing survey revised by RCHME during a survey of scheduled
monuments in County Durham.

The remains of the peel tower, measuring externally about 12.6 m ENE WSW by 10 m transversely, are largely buried beneath mounds of its own debris, up to 2.5 m high, and overgrown with scrub and trees. Generally the outer face is visible for most of the periphery protruding through the collapse; the inner face is less clearly discernable though at the west end it survives to a maximum height of 1.7 m. The springing of the barrel vaulting can be seen in the north and south walls but in the former it is falling inwards. The OS 25" 1st edition map of 1856 shows the tower as roofed with an unusual concavity in the east end, suggesting that it may already have started to collapse; the latest OS map of 1976 shows this end open. Now, just visible in the debris, are traces of a straight wall across the east side; as far as can be seen its construction of stone is indistinguishable from the walling on the other sides. (5)

Tower in churchyard of Church of St James.
Tower. Probably C16. Several courses of sandstone rubble up to 2m high; rectangular plan with open east end and blocked door in west end. Interior has wall along south side 1.5m from external wall; part of barrel vault visible. (6)

NY 949 490. Remains of pele tower SW of Hunstanworth Church.
Scheduled No DU/67. (7)

Listed by Cathcart King. (8)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : OS 6" 1923
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Source Number : 2
Source : Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle upon Tyne
Source details : JW Fawcett
Page(s) : 203
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 10, 1921
Source Number : 3
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F1 DSmith/20-06-1957/OS Archaeology Division Field Investigator
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Source Number : 4
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F2 BHPritchard/17-09-1974/OS Archaeology Division Field Investigator
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Source Number : 5
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : Keith Blood/28-AUG-1991/RCHME: Durham SAMs Project
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Source Number : 6
Source : List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest
Source details : Wear Valley, 05-JUN-1987
Page(s) : 40
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 1842
Source Number : 7
Source : County list of Scheduled Monuments : March 1994
Source details : Durham
Page(s) : 12
Figs. :
Plates :
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Source Number : 8
Source : Scheduled Monument Notification
Source details : 19-Mar-99
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Source Number : 9
Source : Castellarium anglicanum : an index and bibliography of the castles in England, Wales and the Islands. Volume II : Norfolk-Yorkshire and the islands
Source details :
Page(s) : 136
Figs. :
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Source Number :
Source : Hunstanworth Peel/ink survey
Source details :
Page(s) :
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Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : C16
Monument End Date : 1539
Monument Start Date : 1501
Monument Type : Pele Tower
Evidence : Ruined Building
Monument Period Name : Post Medieval
Display Date : C16
Monument End Date : 1600
Monument Start Date : 1540
Monument Type : Pele Tower
Evidence : Ruined Building
Monument Period Name : Post Medieval
Display Date : 1883
Monument End Date : 1883
Monument Start Date : 1883
Monument Type : Pele Tower
Evidence : Ruined Building

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (County No.)
External Cross Reference Number : DU 67
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : SMR Number (Durham)
External Cross Reference Number : 2282
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (National No.)
External Cross Reference Number : 28589
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Listed Building List Entry Legacy Uid
External Cross Reference Number : 404176
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Unified Designation System UID
External Cross Reference Number : 1229336
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Unified Designation System UID
External Cross Reference Number : 1016926
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : NY 94 NW 2
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Related Activities :
Associated Activities : FIELD OBSERVATION ON NY 94 NW 2
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1957-06-20
End Date : 1957-06-20
Associated Activities : FIELD OBSERVATION ON NY 94 NW 2
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1974-09-17
End Date : 1974-09-17
Associated Activities : RCHME: DURHAM SAMS PROJECT
Activity type : MEASURED SURVEY
Start Date : 1991-06-01
End Date : 1991-12-01