Adderstone Tower

Has been described as a Possible Pele Tower, and also as a Possible Bastle

There are no visible remains

NameAdderstone Tower
Alternative NamesTurris de Ederston
Historic CountryNorthumberland
Modern AuthorityNorthumberland
1974 AuthorityNorthumberland
Civil ParishAdderstone with Lucker

A tower, possibly a pele tower or bastle, was recorded at Adderstone in 1415. Its exact location is unknown and no trace of such a structure has been identified. (see NU12NW10 for possible site of the pele). The tower was home of Sir Thomas Forster who fought at the Battle of Flodden, the tower having been built before 1415. The tower was incorporated into a mansion in the late 16th or early 17th century, but both were pulled down when a later Thomas Forster built a new house (Adderstone Hall) in the 18th century. (PastScape)

A medieval tower at Adderstone is mentioned in a document of 1415. However, the exact site has never been located and it has been suggested it maybe the same as the tower at Cocklaw. (Keys to the Past)

The fifteenth century tower was incorporated in a mansion during the late sixteenth or early seventeenth century. In fact two house were built at about this time, but both were pulled down when Thomas built his new home in the early years of the eighteenth century. This is the still existing Adderstone Hall, said to be close to the site of the tower, but thick woods inhibit visual confirmation. (Dodds 1999)

Gatehouse Comments

The suggestion this is the same as Cocklaw Pele seems to be based merely on the existence of some remains at Cocklaw and it being in Adderstone parish. Cocklaw is not near Adderstone Hall and it doesn't seem likely that Thomas Forster would build a new house so far from the previous one (which was probably thoroughly robbed for the new house). Given map reference is for Adderston Hall. The form of the C15/C16 house is not know but is recorded as able to house a garrison of 60 horsemen in 1509 so probably a large chamber/solar tower attached to other buildings. It certainly could not be a pele-house type bastle and probably a bit to early to be a large bastle (of the Hebburn type).

- Philip Davis

Not scheduled

This is a Grade 2* listed building protected by law

Historic England Scheduled Monument Number
Historic England Listed Building number(s)
Images Of England
Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceNU141303
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink

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Calculate Print


  • Dodds, John F., 1999, Bastions and Belligerents (Newcastle upon Tyne: Keepdate Publishing) p. 132-4
  • Salter, Mike, 1997, The Castles and Tower Houses of Northumberland (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 114 (slight)
  • Rowland, T.H., 1987 (reprint1994), Medieval Castles, Towers, Peles and Bastles of Northumberland (Sandhill Press) p. 26
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2 p. 345
  • Graham, Frank, 1976, The Castles of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Frank Graham) p. 11
  • Long, B., 1967, Castles of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) p. 52
  • Bateson, Edward (ed), 1893, Northumberland County History (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) Vol. 1 p. 221-2 online copy
  • Bates, C.J., 1891, Border Holds of Northumberland (London and Newcastle: Andrew Reid) p. 12, 17 (Also published as the whole of volume 14 (series 2) of Archaeologia Aeliana view online)


  • Bates, C.J., 1891, 'Border Holds of Northumberland' Archaeologia Aeliana (ser2) Vol. 14 p. 12, 17 online copy

Primary Sources