#73 Castle Levan
Gourock, Inverclyde, Scotland
1457 and early 16th century
This is NOT an official Lego site
Castle Levan sits
near the banks of the river Clyde. It appears to be built as a typical 16th century Scottish L-plan.
However, the present structure of the castle started as
a massive 15th century tower, built by the Morton family. The
original entrance was left of center on the first floor in the south
face, reached by a ladder, and later perhaps, an external stair.
Mural staircases in the south and north walls descended to the cellars. At the beginning of the 16th century it was enlarged by
abutting an additional tower to the southeast corner of the earlier
keep. The spiral stair was extended to the ground level, and the
new, more convenient entrance.
apparently transferred ["alienated"] the castle and property to William,
2nd Lord Sempill, upon his death just before 1539. Adam's son,
James, took legal action for return of the property, but lost.
The castle was said to be haunted by The White Lady, the ghost of Marion
Montgomery, William Semple's third wife, who was starved to death in the
castle by her angry husband after she murdered the tenants during his
absence. Nothing is known of Levan's history until the New
Statistical Account, published between 1834 and 1845, referred to Levan
as the seat of a Mr. Crooks. A "Mrs. Crooks" was said to own the
castle in 1878, but in 1879 the castle was owned by John Polson,
co-founder of Brown & Polson Corn Merchants. It is not said
if the old castle was actually occupied by these owners. At some
point a new mansion was built on the property, and a source reports that
sometime in the eighteenth century the castle began to fall into
disrepair (see upper photos right and left).
The castle was purchased about 1980 by Lord Trevor Hayward and restored to its present state between 1984-7. It was the home of the Haywards, tall ship enthusiasts, and saw the rearing of their three sons. When I last was in contact with Lord Trevor in January 2000, prior to our trip to Scotland, Lady Janet was in the hospital for surgery. Young Douglas wanted to buy the Lego model below. The castle soon came up for sale - I feared due to the ill health or death of Lady Janet. The plans, elevations and sections below are from the architectural drawings prior to the restoration.
much happier note: my wife and I returned from our trip
to Ireland on 3 July 2003 to find an email
relating that Castle Levan indeed sold more than 6 months earlier to Lord and Lady Edelman. There are additional
pictures of the castle on their website (see below) and
the Laird's Bedroom is now available as a B&B
accommodation beginning at £45 per night pps! The castle and
surroundings are lovely - and this "history" previously ended with a
suggestion to contact them if you were in the area.
Then in early July, 2018 I learned that the castle was purchased from the Edelmans in December 2015 by Ms. Kim Munro, who, after renovations including new ensuite bathrooms, continues to operate the B&B with her partner, Maria Hockin. The Laird's Bedroom is now considerably more expensive, but their reviews on Tripadvisor are outstanding, and they were recently awarded the Quirkiest Place to Stay award by eviivo.
of the Lego Model
Built Dec 1999
Other Castle Levan pages:
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