Once a royal fortress, Lauriston Castle can claim to be one of the oldest privately owned and inhabited castles in the region. By tradition, it was the stronghold of Giric, or Gregory the Great, one of the last of the Pictish kings (AD 878–889). The site of his church of Ecclesgreig is nearby and he gave his Latin name, Ciricius, to St. Cyrus.

Lauriston’s first charter is dated 1243 and it soon developed into a classic courtyard castle which was savagely fought over during Scotland's Wars of Independence and strengthened by King Edward III in 1336 as part of the chain of Plantagenet strongholds which he hoped would prevent a French landing in support of the Scots.

One of the corner towers on the edge of the cliff was incorporated into a typical laird’s house in the 1500s. In turn, this house was absorbed into a very large Georgian mansion of Palladian design, dated 1765–89.

For nearly 450 years Lauriston was held by the Stratons, whose arms of 1292 are among the earliest recorded in Scotland. In 1695, the Stratons were forced to sell Lauriston. Under the charter to the new owner, Court of Session Judge, Sir James Falconer of Phesdo, the estate became a burgh of barony, with a freeport at Miltonhaven. Over the following century, the policies were developed in fashionable Picturesque style, with waterfalls, walks and a two-acre walled garden.

Following its use as RAF barracks during World War II, part of the mansion was demolished.



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Spottinghistory.com team said 8 months ago
Thank you for commenting, now removed.

Norman Mackenzie said 8 months ago
The photograph is of another Laurieston Castle in Edinburgh


Founded: 13th century
Category: Castles and fortifications in United Kingdom

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User Reviews

Alex Gordon (2 years ago)
Must visit
Kathy C (2 years ago)
I have not been here but as a descendent of the Straiton’s I would love to see it. I’ll have to at least drive by when visiting Scotland
J M (3 years ago)
Nicola Paterson (3 years ago)
I use to live here about 34 years ago when I was a child, only the tower was there then, great adventures had. So nice to see it built up again.
Jacek Filipkiewicz (4 years ago)
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