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peel towers

peel towers were temporary refuges, often attached to manor houses, farms, or churches, and commonly built in the 15th and 16th cents. They were normally two storeys, the lower one for cattle, with slit windows, if any, in thick stone walls, and a narrow stair or ladder leading to the upper storey. Of little use against regular forces, they offered some protection against border raiders and were mainly to be found either side of the Anglo-Scottish border. There are good examples at Corbridge and Elsdon in Northumberland. On the Welsh border, strong church towers, like those at Ewyas Harold and Rowlstone, probably served a similar purpose.

J. A. Cannon

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