Bog Hall Bastle, Rothbury Forest

Has been described as a Possible Bastle

There are no visible remains

NameBog Hall Bastle, Rothbury Forest
Alternative NamesBog Cottage
Historic CountryNorthumberland
Modern AuthorityNorthumberland
1974 AuthorityNorthumberland
Civil ParishHesleyhurst

The following is an interesting description of Rothbury Forest as it appeared a century ago:- "The whole Forest, as it is still called, is dotted over with solitary farm-steads, from a quarter of a mile to a mile distant from each other. These houses, or rather strongholds, are very old, and are called Bastile buildings. The walls are in general about five feet thick, and the stones secured by strong cement, though sometimes mud has been used. The doors, which are low and narrow, are usually placed at the east end of the building ; the jambs are of stone, with holes to receive a single wooden bat, by which means the door was barred, and the cattle secured on the ground floor; the light was admitted through loop-holes. The second floor is supported either by a stone arch or thick oak joists; and was entered on the south by outside stone steps, the door being fastened as below. Near the fireplace, and directly above the vault-door, was a projection from the wall, contrived for the purpose of pouring down boiling water on the moss-troopers, who were assailing the building below." (Mackenzie) Not one of these strong houses remains at the present day. The last was probably "Bog Hall," which was demolished some years ago. (Dixon 1903)

All remembrance of the name Bog Hall appears to have vanished. Repeated enquiries in the district around Rothbury and in the town itself revealed no knowledge of the name nor of the bastle (F1 ASP 06-FEB-1957). (Northumberland HER)

Gatehouse Comments

SMR locates this in square NU0500, in modern Rothbury CP, but there is no 'Bog' place-name there. Rothbury Forest is and was a large area, certainly extending beyond the bounds of the modern civil parish. At NZ07299776 is a 'Bog House' shown on 1866 map, next to Bog Burn, 4km SSE of Rothbury. A slight field mark shows the site on modern air photos. The map shows a rectangular building within a small square field not untypical for the smaller bastles but hardly a building usually associated with the name 'hall'. Gatehouse suggests this as a location for Bog Hall although further research is required to confirm or refute this suggestion.

- Philip Davis

Not scheduled

Not Listed

Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceNZ072977
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink

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  • Dodds, John F., 1999, Bastions and Belligerents (Newcastle upon Tyne: Keepdate Publishing) p. 154-5
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 2 p. 352
  • Graham, Frank, 1976, The Castles of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Frank Graham) p. 76
  • Long, B., 1967, Castles of Northumberland (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) p. 71
  • Dixon, D.D., 1903, Upper Coquetdale Northumberland: Its History, Traditions, Folk-lore and Scenery (Newcastle-upon Tyne: Robert Redpath) p. 473 online copy
  • Mackenzie, E., 1825 (2edn), An historical, topographical, and descriptive view of the county of Northumberland Vol. 2 p. 50-1 online copy


  • Christopherson, R., 2011, 'Northumberland bastles: origin and distribution' Medieval Settlement Research Vol. 26 p. 21-33 (listed in appendix)
  • Hadcock, R.N., 1939, 'A map of mediaeval Northumberland and Durham' Archaeologia Aeliana (ser4) Vol. 16 p. 148-218 esp 181