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HER Number:22631
Name:RUAN LANIHORNE - Medieval castle


The site of Ruan Lanihorne castle.

Grid Reference:SW 8946 4193
Parish:Ruanlanihorne, Carrick, Cornwall
Map:Show location on Streetmap

Protected Status: None recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • OS No. (OS Quarter-sheet and OS No.): SW84SE 15
  • Primary Record No. (1985-2009): 22631
  • SMR No. (OS Quarter-sheet and SMR No.): SW84SE 15

Monument Type(s):

  • CASTLE (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)

Full description

Lanihorne Castle, the home of John le Erchedekne in 1334, was fortified after receiving permission from the king. The completed castle appears to have comprised a round keep with attached towers, of which six were extant in the C18. Whitaker suggests that the castle was deserted and fell into ruin when the archdeacon family ended in the C15. By 1780 only a 13m section of the central tower existed, and was seen by Whiteley who also mentioned two later chimneys that had been added (b1). A cellar or dungeon lay under the house, and the last of the walls had been demolished by 1889. Whitley also described a section of the outer wall that was rubble set in clay, and was 1.5m wide and 2.5m high. A furnace inside the wall had four flues and formed part of the brewhouse; it seems that a more modern brewhouse was built on the site in about 1870 on the traditional site of the earlier brewery (h1). Two parallel walls were found in the area of the southern wall, and may have been a "water gate". A skeleton was found in the internal yard in this area in about 1750. Whitley was unable to trace the W wall, although an oak beam was found, and he did trace the length of the N wall and found it to be 1.5m wide, like the southern (b1,b6). Whiteley stated that building stones from the castle could be seen in the walls of Ruan Lanihorne village (b1) and the 1907 map marks "Remains of Castle" here (b3); but in 1968, the OS fieldworker could find no identifiable remains of the castle (h1).

Site history:
1: 1968. ANK / OS

<1> WHITELEY, HM, 1886, UNKNOWN TITLE, VOL 9, 425-448 (Unedited Source). SCO6456.

<2> Mackenzie, 1897, Castles of England, VOL 2, 15 (Bibliographic reference). SCO3888.

<3> Ordnance Survey, 1900s, 2nd Edition 1:2500 Map (Cartographic materials). SCO4050.

<4> Pounds, N, 1937, The Medieval Castle in Cornwall, NO 104, 30 (Article in Serial). SCO4152.

<5> DOUCH, HL (ED), 1976, WHITAKERS HISTORY OF RUAN LANIHORNE, (NS) VOL 7, 2, 108-116 (Unedited Source). SCO8336.

Sources / Further Reading

[1]SCO6456 - Unedited Source: WHITELEY, HM. 1886. UNKNOWN TITLE. JRIC. VOL 9, 425-448.
[2]SCO3888 - Bibliographic reference: Mackenzie. 1897. Castles of England. VOL 2, 15.
[3]SCO4050 - Cartographic materials: Ordnance Survey. 1900s. 2nd Edition 1:2500 Map.
[4]SCO4152 - Article in Serial: Pounds, N. 1937. The Medieval Castle in Cornwall. Annual report of the Royal Cornwall Polytechnic Society. 104. NO 104, 30.
[5]SCO8336 - Unedited Source: DOUCH, HL (ED). 1976. WHITAKERS HISTORY OF RUAN LANIHORNE. JRIC. (NS) VOL 7, 2, 108-116.

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Related records: none recorded