Pencaitland East Lothian Scotland

Pencaitland became a burgh of barony in 1695. There are two parts to Pencaitland Western and Eastern Pencaitland separated by the River Tyne. The Western side has the older houses and the main part of the old village where the eastern side has predominantly newer housing The old school house built i 1820. There are wood walks and many things to see in Pencaitland with its local hostelry three nearby Castles and Glenkinchie Distillery you can spend a great day out here.

Pencaitland Stone

Pencaitland Mercat Cross

Pencaitland Mercat Cross was erected circa 1695 when by act of parliament the burgh can have a cross and a marketplace. Pencaitland has been said to be  where  body snatchers (resurrectionists) were caught and put in jougs (manacles) before receiving punishment from the crowd of villagers. 

Pencaitland Mercat Cross Pencaitland Mercat Cross Plaque


Pencaitland Belfry Cottage and Old Schoolhouse

The first school and schoolhouse circa 1820, Pencaitland stands on the corner across from the Pencaitland mercat cross. On the Stone above the front porch a boy sites reading a book on the stone an inscription reads: “Given by John McEwan | To Robert Focco teacher | Wm’s Son Gave It to Mrs Trevelyan”.

Belfry Cottage and School House

 belfry Cottage and Old Schoolhouse Pencaitland Belfry Cottage and Old Schoolhouse

Pencaitland Bridges

The River Tyne flows under two bridges the old bridge between western and eastern Pencaitland was built circa 1500 to connect the two parts of the village seen below left. The other bridge is to the east on the way out of Pencaitland. On the south side are the arms of the Sinclair family and the date 1510. 

 Pencaitland Bridge built 1510 Pencaitland Bridge East

Pencaitland Temperance Hall

The Trevelyan Hall (Temperance Hall) in Wester Pencaitland was erected in 1883 by Mrs.Trevelyan in memory of her husband, Arthur Trevelyan, a well known benefactor of Pencaitland who died in 1880. Arthur Trevelyan also had the Tyneholm Cottages and Trevelyan Cottage and Post Office built 1881.

 Pencaitland Arthur Trevelyan Temperance Hall Pencaitland Arthur Trevelyan Cottages

Pencaitland War Memorial

Pencaitland War Memorial was erected after the first world war in memorial to the fallen from the village. There is a plaque at the base of the monument to the memory of those who fell in the second world war.  

Pencaitland War Memorial

Pencaitland Parish Church

Pencaitland Parish Church was consecrated in 1242 and was built prior to that but when is uncertain. There is a date on the lintel of the west door 1631 which is when the present church was erected. It is possible the church as most were extended and renovated at different periods but for certain a church stood here prior to 1242. In 1127 the Bishop of St. Andrews claimed jurisdiction over all the churches in the Lothians and prior to 1018 East Lothian was part of Northumbria . 

Pencaitland Parish Church

Penkaet Castle Pencaitland

The Baronial home of Woodhead (or in old Celtic Penkaet) now known as Penkaet Castle built circa 1485 then sold to Adam de Crichton in 1506. The next owner was Alexander Cockburn who lived here till his death in 1579. Sir George Cockburn of Ormiston then purchased the barony before selling it to the Pringle family in 1636. The Castle was passed on in 1681 to John Lauder of Newington,Edinburgh and were erected into the barony of Fountainhall. When his son, Sir John Lauder, was elevated to the Bench in 1689 he took the title of Lord Fountainhall The Dick-Lauder’s moved to the Grange in Edinburgh and the castle fell into disrepair. In 1922 with a new owner an author and traveller, Professor John Bernard Holbourn with hobbies in Architectural design and archaeology, went on to renovated the property bringing it back to its magnificence.  With old Castles come the ghosts and murders and Penkaet is no different and boasts of three ghosts Alexander Hamilton, John Cockburn said to have murdered and King Charles I. Professor Holbourn was gifted the bed and Death mask of Charles I and is said that the King on occasion rested in the bed. Penkaet Castle is strictly private and is only accessible by appointment. I thank the present owner for allowing me to take these photographs.  

 Penkaet Castle Pencaitland

The Plaques on the entrance posts to Penkaet Castle were sculpted by Maria Anna Angelika Kauffmann RA (30 October 1741 – 5 November 1807).

 Work by Maria Anna Angelika Kauffmann RA  Work by Maria Anna Angelika Kauffmann RA  Work by Maria Anna Angelika Kauffmann RA  Work by Maria Anna Angelika Kauffmann RA

Glenkinchie Distillery

The Rate brothers started their whisky making in 1825 when they opened a distillery which they called Milton they then expanded and built the present distillery on the current site in 1837 when the name became Glenkinchie bases in a glen where the Kinchie Burn flows. Giving the name. This only lasted 16 years (1853) when the Rate brothers were sequestrated (bankrupt) and whisky making stopped. In 1881 the distillery opened once again and with new investors the plant was rebuilt and expanded into its present form.  With a number of small distilleries Rosebank, St. Magdalene, Grange and Clydesdale Glenkinchie formed Scottish Malt Distillers in 1914. The Glenkinchie distillery closed in 1968 and is now a Museum and Visitor Centre where you can see how whisky is made and try a selection of homemade Scottish whiskies.  

Glenkinchie Distillery Pencaitland

Saltoun (Castle) Hall

Saltoun (Castle) Hall the De Morville family became owners of the lands of Saltoun circa 1140 with  the original Saltoun Tower which over the centuries has been added to and changed hands from De Morville family to Abernathy family (1260) to Fletcher family circa (1640). Records of the property being enlarged in circa 1780 and again in 1820 when owned by the Fletcher family Saltoun Hall was divided into apartments circa 1970. When the Fletcher family converted the Stable Court for their own use as a dwelling.

Saltoun Hall Pencaitland

Winton Castle

Winton Castle (Winton Tower House). In 1619 when the 3rd Earl of Winton built the stately home of Winton near Pencaitland. Where a Tower house (Castle) had previously stood before being burnt by English invasion. The House was purchased by Mrs Hamilton Nisbet’s of Pencaitland in 1779. It then became the property of Lady Ruthven in 1846. Constance Nisbet Hamilton became the owner in 1885 and married Henry Ogilvy of Inverquharity, Angus, in 1888. When Constance Nisbet Hamilton died in 1920 and then passed to Gilbert Ogilvy, then the property passed to Sir David Ogilvy 13th Bt. and on his death in 1992, Sir Francis Gilbert Arthur Ogilvy of Inverquharity, 14th Bt. is now owner.

Winton Castle Pencaitland

The Earls of Winton 

Robert Seton’s father died in 1585 and Robert succeeded as 6th Lord Seton. Robert Seton the 6th Lord Seton also became 1st Earl of Winton at Holyrood House, on 16 November 1600. The second Earl (1603) forfeited the Earldom after a short time due to a mental illness and his title passed to his brother George in 1607. In 1619 he built a stately home of Winton near Pencaitland. Where a Tower house had previously stood before being burnt by English invasion. George Seton 4th Earl of Winton became head of the family estates in 1650 from a young age. He was a military man and fought in many battles and commanded many troops till his death 1704. The 5th Earl was educated in Europe and did not return until circa 1710.  George Seton, 5th Earl of Winton was convicted of high treason in 1716 after taking part in the Jacobite rising of 1715 supporting James Stuart.  His titles were forfeit and he was condemned to death, but he managed to escape the Tower of London and returned to Europe where he later died in 1749. The Earldom returned in 1859 when Archibald William Montgomerie, 13th Earl of Eglinton and 1st Earl of Winton (1812–1861) was also created Earl of Winton in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. The present is Hugh Archibald William Montgomerie, 19th Earl of Eglinton 7th Earl of Winton.


Links to East Lothian Map

All About Edinburgh