Wainhope Pele, Falstone Forest

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

There are no visible remains

NameWainhope Pele, Falstone Forest
Alternative Names
Historic CountryNorthumberland
Modern AuthorityNorthumberland
1974 AuthorityNorthumberland
Civil ParishFalstone

Remains of a medieval pele tower were once visible on sloping ground above the Plashetts Burn. They were seen in the early and mid-C20, but visits made in the 1970s failed to find the remains. (Keys to the Past N6289)

The remains of a post-medieval building, measuring 26m long by 5.5m wide, were discovered in forestry plantations in the 1980s. Its walls measured up to 1m thick in places and traces of lime mortar could be seen. The building was divided into four rooms with an entrance through the long east wall. The ruins of the house have been used to build a shooting butt which has been built on top of the remains. (Keys to the Past N6294)

Pele or bastle at Wainhope (Hadcock 1939).

(NY 66409210) The remains of Wainhope Pele, situated in a clearing in re-afforested area to the south east of Plashett's Burn (F1 FC 05.07.564).

The siting falls within newly -afforested land and there are no visible remains. The position is excellent for a defensive tower, being near the top of a W-facing slope, and naturally defend on the N side by steep rock crags which drop to the Wainhope Burn. The tower would command the valley of the Plashetts Burn to the W and SW, and the hills for several miles beyond, and would overlook a great area of open moorland to the NW, N and NE. The ground rises locally only to the SE, and the slope is very slight (F2 BHP 28-SEP-70).

Gatehouse Comments

This is most unlikely as the site of a gentry status house but could be the location of a 'pele house' type bastle. This is not an area were they could have been many buildings. The location of the lost 'pele' is only vaguely given and the 'longhouse' remains found in the 1980s may well represent this lost 'pele'. No building in shown on the six-inch OS map surveyed in 1862 but a track is shown leading to the location of the 'long house'.

- Philip Davis

Not scheduled

Not Listed

Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceNY664921
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink

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  • Dodds, John F., 1999, Bastions and Belligerents (Newcastle upon Tyne: Keepdate Publishing) p. 290
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2 p. 355
  • Graham, Frank, 1976, The Castles of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Frank Graham) p. 333
  • Long, B., 1967, Castles of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) p. 165


  • Hadcock, R.N., 1939, 'A map of mediaeval Northumberland and Durham' Archaeologia Aeliana (ser4) Vol. 16 p. 148-218 esp 184