Scottish Castles Association

Preserving the Past for the Future

Seafield Tower Collapse

Seafield Tower in Fife is in bad repair and in a critical state following the recent collapse of more walling.

seafield 1908

Seafield in 1908
seafield present
Seafield in June 2015 - compare with the picture above to see what has been lost

A 16th century L-plan tower, Seafield stands on a rocky outcrop which projects into the sea near Kinghorn. Within its enclosing wall the tower rises from a vaulted basement, with five-foot thick walls, through some 5 storeys . Although strongly built it is but an empty shell with much of its walling missing. The red sandstone with which it is built has suffered badly from erosion.

It was abandoned in 1773 and scheduled Category B in 1973 by Historic Scotland.

This has done nothing to arrest its decay. Early photographs show just what has been lost over the last 100 years. In January 2013 a large part tumbled after a fierce winter storm. This prompted a response and it was inspected by Fife Council to assess both public safety and historic environmental worries. The local archaeologist found the remaining structure reasonably sound but advised that the site be surrounded by a fence, the cost of which should be met by the owner. Nothing seems to have transpired and when I visited the site in June 2015 the freshness of scattered stones indicated yet another fall.

seafield wall
Seafield's enclosing wall - note the long cracks in the main tower

Seafield is on the coastal path which is a popular tourist attraction. What is Fife Council waiting for - another storm to reduce this tower to a 'rickle o' stanes'?

Article by SCA member Brian McGarrigle.

Added: 20 Aug 2015 Updated: 28 Mar 2018
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