Thursday, 4 August 2011

The Mystery of Old Balintore Castle

The former conservation officer for Angus did some marvellous research on Balintore Castle which came as a delightful surprise to me.

In the 1580's and 1590's an inspired and hardy soul called Timothy Pont walked the length and breadth of Scotland to produce the country's first atlas. His maps are characterised by their neatness, accuracy, attention to detail and unusually, miniature drawings of all major buildings clearly taken from life.

On Pont's Map 29 Middle Strathmore, now located at the National Library of Scotland, there is a small picture of a tower house labelled "Balintor". It is strangely reminiscent of the present Balintore Castle, with its tall central tower, and very close-by ....

Balintor on Timothy Pont's 16C Map

So clearly the current Victorian Balintore Castle was NOT the first one in the area. This begs the question, where is or was the old (presumably mediaeval) Balintore Castle? Is it perhaps hidden inside the current building? When the Jacobean-style Dunlop House (1830's) came on the market, I viewed the property and was especially delighted to be allowed down through a hole in the floor to the mediaeval vaulted cellars! :-)

Dunlop House

Anyhow, I suspect the mystery of the old Balintore Castle has recently been solved by an reknown architectural historian from Dundee. And the solution is ..... postponed until a later blog entry of course. :-)

Apologies again for the lack of blog entries. I spoke too soon in my last entry, the Internet went down again immediately afterwards for another 4 days. :-(

1 comment:

  1. Went there today for a look. Would love to know more about it.