Fulton Tower

Point/Elder name : Fetton/Foultown

Grid Reference : NT 60630 15800

1545 : X

Remains : Partial to first floor

Access : Field access

Archaeology? : Yes, adj buildings; dykes

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Fulton Tower

The site is noted on the Pont and Blau maps, its name is surmised by Tancred as meaning ‘foul ground’. In 1694 George Whyt paid one hearth. This is the remains of a small tower of the 16th C. The OS survey in 1858 states that ‘Fullarton gives it as a place of great size & strength, but there are no marks of it being much larger than at the present time’. Fullarton must be a local historian? The tower is roughly rectangular in plan, with the south wall missing, but three walls survive to a 10 foot or so. The ground levels have risen considerably, but two well cut gun loops can be see, as well as window and indications of hearth openings. This, in addition to other details sets this building on a higher social level than some of the other towers in Rulewater such as Slacks and Kilnsike, which are simpler with no hearths and gunloops. It is also likely to a later structure. Joist holes in the NW wall indicate the level for the first floor. There does not appear to have been a vault. The construction is lime bonded with sandstone rubble and dressings. While the tower is modest in size, no larger than others in the district, the masonry work is of good quality. The stair tower is largely missing, but there are clear traces in the South East corner. While the masonry remains are modest, it is likely that there were ancillary structures close by, the adjacent ground shows indications of a barmkin wall and buildings; there are signs of an annex against the SW wall; this is also seen at Timpeandean Tower. Around the adjacent fields are extensive banks and traces of field systems. It is said to have been built for the Fulton family in the 14th C, but the present structure appears to be later, probably mid-16th C. It is mentioned as being one of the towers destroyed in Hertford’s raid in 1545 as part of the ‘Rough Wooing’. Records for the site are modest, but the Inventory describes the site as being mentioned on the marriage of Margaret Hume of Cowdenknowes to William Turnbull of Bedrule in 1570. There is said to have been a bitter feud with the Kerrs of Ferniehurst. There are signs of repairs at some stage, a gap in the south west wall has been built up to the outside plane of the wall, but much thinner in depth; this indicates that it has been a repair of the ruin, possibly by the Elliots or the Ushers of Wells, who would look onto it from the former Wells House. It is possible that the route of the Wheel Causeway passed this site from north north east by Gatescote, through the Sclaterford, passing Wester Fodderlie, Old Fodderlie, Fulton, before rising up the Fulton Burn to cross Black Law and descend to Jedburgh. A notch in the slope on the south side of the burn might indicate a route.

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