Finavon estate was the property of the Lindsay Earls of Crawford from 1375, who built the now-ruined castle. David Lindsay, 10th Earl of Crawford, married Margaret, the daughter of Cardinal David Beaton, at Finavon in 1546.

Extravagance ruined the Crawford fortunes, and in 1625 the barony of Finavon was disposed of by a forced sale to Alexander Lindsay, 2nd Lord Spynie. It passed through the Carnegie family, the Gordon Earls of Aboyne and the Gardynes.

In 1843 the Castle was bought by Thomas Gardyne of Middleton. Through an 18th-century marriage he came of the old Lindsay stock. His descendant, Lieutenant-Colonel Alan David Greenhill Gardyne died in 1953, leaving the estate to a daughter, Mrs Susan Mazur.

The castle was an L-plan tower-house of five storeys, with a garret and a courtyard. The tower visible today dates from about 1600. Excavations have revealed that the tower is an adjunct tacked onto the north-east corner of a much older, more extensive structure.

The house is a Scottish baronial style mansion built in 1865 for the then laird, David Greenhill Gardyne, by Messrs Carver and Symon of Arbroath.

The nearby Finavon Doocot is Scotland's largest dovecot, with 2400 nesting boxes. It is believed to have been built for the Earl of Crawford in the 16th Century and is now maintained by the National Trust for Scotland.

On Finavon Hill, above the castle there is a vitrified Iron Age hillfort dating from the mid-1st millennium BCE.

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Founded: 1375
Category: Castles and fortifications in United Kingdom

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