Wreaths Tower

Wreaths Tower, Dumfries and Galloway


Mainsriddle, East of Caulkerbush


B Road off A710



Wreath’s Tower is situated close to the village of Mainsriddle on the side of a country road.

Not much remains of Wreath’s Tower, with just fragments of the south and east walls, and the remnants of a turnpike stair and a doorway.  The height of the stairway indicates that the tower was at least four storeys high, and the tower was oblong in shape.  Although probably impressive in its day, this would not have been James Douglas residence and would probably have been rented out to a tenant.

~ History ~

1500's ~ James Douglas, the fourth Earl of Morton, builds himself a tower to secure the surrounding countryside. Douglas is an influential and powerful Protestant, rising to the position of Lord Chancellor of Scotland.

1567 ~ Mary, Queen of Scots, is imprisoned at Loch Leven Castle following her surrender to the Protestant nobles at the Battle of Carberry Hill. She is forced by James Douglas and his supporters to abdicate in favour of her son, the future King James VI.

1568 ~ Following Mary's escape from Loch Leven Castle, Douglas fights against Mary's forces at the Battle of Langside. The result is a decisive defeat for Mary, who has no choice but to flee to England and beg Queen Elizabeth I of England for mercy.

Douglas quells any further Catholic support for Mary in Scotland, and becomes one of four Regents who govern the country while Mary’s son during her son's minority.

1581 ~ James Douglas meets a grisly end once the King comes of age. He is accused of helping to plot the murder of Lord Darnley, James VI’s father.  Having introduced a new kind of guillotine to the country, he is one of its first victims when he was executed in Edinburgh.

1621 ~ The tower and surrounding lands passed to Robert, ninth Lord Maxwell.

1663 ~ Wreaths Tower is superceded as the principle residence by a newer building at Cavens.

1667 ~ John Corbet, the former bailie in Dumfries holds Wreaths Tower.

1734 ~ The tower is brought back back the Maxwell's.

1773 ~ The ownership of the tower passes into the hands of a Richard Oswald of Ayrshire.