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Fluffer McKitty
posted 08-01-2002 03:37 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Fluffer McKitty   Click Here to Email Fluffer McKitty     Edit/Delete Message
I was wondering about a particular Scottish castle, Fraser Castle. Is it located in Fraserburgh(should be on the north-east coast) and if it's not there, where is it? I have read that there is a castle in Fraserburgh that was converted into a lighthouse. Are Fraser Castle and this "lighthouse castle" in any way related? I have a friend who is distantly related to the original lord of Fraserburgh, and I'm asking this question for him.
Fluffer McKitty, 18 years old.

Senior Member
posted 08-01-2002 04:16 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for AJR     Edit/Delete Message
The following information is on Fraser Castle.

Thomas Fraser’s tower house of about 1454-60, called Muchalls-in-Mar, was made into a Z-plan castle by Michael Fraser between 1565 and 1588 with the addition of a square tower and a round one. His son Andrew, created Lord Fraser in 1633, lengthened the main block and added the magnificent upper works with dormers, bartizans and a balustraded top to the round tower, and also the two courtyard ranges on the north. The main building has the date 1617 with the name of the master mason I.Bel (John Bell), while the courtyard ranges bear the date 1631 and the initials of Lord Fraser, his wives and daughter-in-law. It was about this time that the name was changed to Castle Fraser. The castle contains a ‘laird’s lug’ which is by far the most elaborate of its kind in Scotland. It is formed in the thickness of the wall at one corner of the building, and entered from behind a window shutter. Below is a tiny room, itself containing a movable slab into another chamber beneath. This is between the vaulting of the hall and the room above. The grounds were ravaged by the Royalists in 1638 and 1645 but the castle survived unharmed, while Lord Fraser took refuge at Cairnbulg. The fourth Lord died a fugitive after the 1715 rebellion and the castle passed through various branches of the family before it was restored for the Pearsons in the 1920s and 1960s and then handed to the National Trust.

Also, you can find information at the following website. http://www.rcahms.gov.uk/canmore/details?inumlink=18722

However, at Fraserburgh there is a castle known as Kinnaird's Head Castle, which has been converted into a lighthouse. Details as follows.

This is a well known landmark in the town of Fraserburgh, as well as from the sea, for the castle stands on the very tip of Kinnaird’s Head where the Aberdeenshire coastline turns west to flank the Moray Firth. It was, as a consequence, turned into a lighthouse in 1787, by superimposing a lamp on the flat roof within the parapet. This is unusual for a fortalice, but one which at least guarantees its preservation.
It is a massive rectangular tower of simple outline, said to have been built in 1570 by Sir Alexander Fraser of Philorth, but having a more ancient aspect. He may well have modified an already existing castle. The theory is that he built the tower to accommodate himself during his supervision of the construction of the harbour he built at Faithlie in that year, a place that was later called Fraserburgh. Whatever the origins of the castle, it was certainly not built for temporary purposes, having walls 6ft (1.8m) thick. The strange adjoining Wine Tower, which is of a slightly earlier date, and was probably an outbuilding belonging to the original castle.
The main keep, which rises four storeys to a parapet, has open rounds at all angles, and machicolated projections in the centre of each face at this level. There may originally have been a gabled garret storey within the parapet walk. The masonry is harled and whitewashed, and the walls are somewhat rounded at the angles. The basement is vaulted, as is the hall on the first floor. There are doorways at basement level in the east and north fronts, although the original doorway was at first floor level on the east front, and has now been converted into a window. The spiral stairway formerly rose in the north-east angle. Inevitably, there has been a great deal of alteration internally to adapt the building for its present purpose.
The Wine Tower, standing somewhat lower on the promontory, about 150ft (45m) away, is an unusual building. The masonry is very rough, and the structure has been reduced to three storeys, all of which are vaulted. It is reached only by a small path, its door being only a few feet from the edge of the precipice. Immediately beneath is a large cave known as Selches Hole, now inaccessible. The tower contains no internal stairway, and no communication between basement and first floor. The first floor itself is only reached from a trapdoor in the second floor. Since there is no window in the first floor chamber, it was probably intended as a hiding place, which would pass unnoticed by strangers. Curiously enough, despite its rough character, the upper vault of the Wine Tower has three finely carved heraldic pendants with mottoes, with the Fraser arms and the Royal arms of King James V, which dates the building from at least the first half of the 16th century. An inscription on the building states “THE GLORY OF THE HONORABLE IS TO FEIR GOD”.

and website http://www.rcahms.gov.uk/canmore/details_gis?inumlink=20778
This should answer your question.

Senior Member
posted 08-01-2002 08:51 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for AJR     Edit/Delete Message
For Kinnaird's Head Castle, see also http://www.kinnaird.net/castle4.htm
and http://www.scotlandsource.com/about/ctvk2.htm


posted 08-03-2002 06:27 PM           Edit/Delete Message
Castle Fraser also appears on my website, linked below. You will find an original drawing by MacGibbon and Ross, and their plans, with a history link which provides mor detail on the family.

'Demeure par la verite'
Visit; Gordon's Scottish Castles Resource Page

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