Crawford Castle

Crawford Castle, Lanarkshire

~ History ~

80 AD ~ A Roman fort is built to garrison 300 troops.

170 AD ~ The Roman's leave the area for good and their fort is left to decay.

1080's ~ Thorlongus of the Merse is overlord of Crawford, one of the largest and most influential barony in southern Scotland.

1175 ~ Decendants of Thorlongus take the name Crawford and build themselves a timber motte and bailey castle.

1215 ~ The Lindsay family inherit half of the Barony of Crawford, known as Crawford Parish, through a marriage to the younger daughter of Sir John Crawford. His elder daughter Margaret marries into the powerful Douglas clan.

1246 ~ The other half of the Crawford barony is retained by the Crawford family upon Sir John's death. This half of the barony is known as Crawford john Parish.

Clan Carmichael of Meadowflat act as hereditary constables of the castle, retaining this post under successive owners.

1297 ~ William Wallace captures the castle from the English.

1320 ~ The Lindsay's of Crawford Castle ass their seal to the Declaration of Arbroath.

1390 ~ Sir David Lindsay takes part in a tournament held at London Bridge, defeating his English opponent. He wins great praise on St George's Day for bravery in a duel with the Englishman Baron Welles, who at a banquet in Edinburgh, and presumably after too much alcohol issued, as Champion of England, the challenge: "Let words have no place; if ye know not the Chivalry and Valiant deeds of Englishmen; appoint me a day and a place where ye list, and ye shall have experience."

1398 ~ King Robert II grants the title of Earl of Crawford to David Lindsay.

1488 ~ At the accession of James IV the barony of Crawford is transferred to Archibald Douglas, 5th Earl of Angus for supporting his father, King James III, against the young prince's rebellion.

1578 ~ The Douglas Earls of Angus forfeit their estates and castles, including Crawford, to the young King James V. The King uses Crawford as a hunting lodge. His frequent visits are not just for hunting but he also takes for himself a mistress, Elizabeth Carmichael, the daughter of the hereditary constable.

1542 ~ Following King James V death, the barony is returned to the Earls of Angus.

1595 ~ The hereditary contableship of the castle of the Carmichaels of Meadowflat come to an end.

1633 ~ The 11th Earl is created Marquess of Douglas, and the castle is rebuilt. 

The castle later passes to the Duke of Hamilton, before being sold to Sir George Colebrooke in the 18th century. After a period of use as a farmhouse, the building is abandoned at the end of the 18th century, and much of the stone reused to build the present Crawford Castle Farm.


Crawford, South of Abingdon


B road off A702, Off M74


ML12 6UA

Crawford Castle, substantially in ruins, is located on the north bank of the River Clyde, around half a mile north of Crawford, South Lanarkshire, Scotland.

The ruins stand on an earlier motte and bailey earthwork. The castle was formerly known as Lindsay Tower, after its former owners, the Lindsay family. The strategic location of the castle, guards the approach from England into the upper Clyde Valley.

The history on the site itself can be traced back to Roman times.

Despite its ruinous state, this is a fabulous castle to explore, with many interesting features still easy to identify in its overgrown state.

Getting to the castle you will cross the river from the village where you will be able to see it located on the opposite bank.

Park opposite the castle on the side of the road with consideration and you'll see a gateway that leads to the castle.