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Winkston

An old rubble-built farm building with a venerable past, Winkston lies to the east of the A703 road, 1½ miles (2.5 km) north of Peebles in the Scottish Borders. Standing behind an early 19th-century farm-house, it represents a much-altered rectangular tower house dating from 1545. It was remodelled as a Laird's House in 1734, when it was reduced in height to two storeys, the basement vaulting removed and new windows inserted. The original entrance is gone, but an original lintel inscribed 'Anno Dom 1545' has been placed above the new doorway and a horizontal gun loop survives. The building has subsequently been used as a dairy and a store, with most of its openings blocked, but has been B-listed since 1971.

The house was built by William Dickson, who had owned the property from 1536. although his family may have held the lands here as early as 1489. John Dickson of Winkston, hold the dubious honour of being the only Provost of Peebles to have been assassinated (in 1572). The property passed to the Little family and then, by 1767, to the Stevensons of Smithfield. By 1792 both the house and the land were in a poor state and were sold to the Anstruthers, and then to the artist Robert Thorburn (1818-85) for £7800 in 1857.


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