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Cruixton Castle





Cruixton castleClick image to enlarge

This Cruixton Castle probably had only remote Douglas links, and has been confused with Cruixton in Forfar, which was a Douglas baronetcy (see below).


"...Crocston, Cruxton, Crookston, or Cruikston Castle, the oldest baronial building in the Barony of Renfrew, erected about 1150 by Robert Croc, the Anglo-Norman companion of the first High Steward, both of whose lineal descendants were the unfortunate Henry, Lord Darnley, and the still more unfortunate Queen Marie. The Castle was inhabited by Matthew, 2nd Earl of Lennox, married to Elizabeth Hamilton, sister of James, 1st Earl of Arran, till 1506, when he abandoned the Castle, and removed to the Palace he had erected on the lands of Inchinnan. He was slain at the battle of Flodden Field on 9th September, 1513. His grandson, Matthew, 4th Earl of Lennox, in March, 1544, fled to England, and was married there in July thereof to Margaret Douglas, aunt uterine of Queen Marie..."



The first Castle was probably built by Robert de Croc, apparently a scion of a Norman family, who was proprietor of the estate about 1190, and whose name survives in a corrupted form as "Crookstoun." In 1330 the estate was purchased by Sir Alan Stewart, a kinsman of the Stuarts, Seigneurs of D’Aubigny, famous in the history of France and Scotland. Sir Alan, in 1361, granted the Castle and estate to Sir 3. Stewart of Darnley; and thus they ultimately came into the possession of Henry, Lord Daruley (1546—67), centuries afterwards.

The remains of the present Castle probably belong to the 13th century (1290—1390), though the exterior arrangements plainly indicate that there was a Keep of some kind here long before that date, though the ruthless hand of Time has cleared all the relics away. But in 1488, when James IV. was fighting for the Crown after his father, James III., had been killed at Sauchieburn, he attacked his opponent, the Earl of Lennox, grandfather of Darnley, at Duchal, and besieged Crookston Castle, bringing " Mons Meg" from Edinburgh for the purpose. Surely this shows that even at that time the Castle was of considerable importance..


The ruined building was purchased in 1757 by the Maxwells of Pollok and in 1931 Sir John Stirling Maxwell (1866-1956) presented it to the National Trust for Scotland.


See also:  Douglases of Cruixton,



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Last modified: Friday, 17 May 2024