The Fleming Castle

When the Flemings came to construct their castle at the end of the 14th century, the best they would have been able to build would have been a strong stone tower.  The country was much too improverished to permit anything more ambitious, such as the great courtyard strongholds built before the death of Alexander III.

Such a tower would have been an “L-Plan”, a rectangular block with a wing projecting at the end of one of the long sides.  A few small timber or stone outbuildings would also have been attached.  As time went on, and the power and influence of the family grew, the castle would have been enlarged by the addition of other stone structures, such as a great hall for festive occassions.

The site chosen is where Cumbernauld house stands today and althought the original tower has disappeared, blocks of it’s masonry can be picked out amongst the stones used to construct Cumbernauld House.

Part of the courttyard buildings are still standing, particularly the wall that seperates the lower service area from the car park.  on the lower side of this there is a long row of corbels or projecting stones, of a distinctive 16th century pattern, designed to support timbers of a lean to building.

In 1963-64, Cumbernauld Historical society, in co-operation with Glasgow archaeological society excavated an area to the north east of Cumbernauld House and uncovered part of the domestic periphery of the castle, comprising a 15th century rubbish chute, an adjoining prison and cellar and a well-house reached by a flight of steps.  In 1981-82 Cumbernauld and Kilsyth district museums excavated an area adjacent to the earlier excavation and found a cobbled courtyard, the base of a circular building and significant walling.

This is still under the park today!

Information from CKDC public leaflet.

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