|Westgate Hall is located in Westgate in the village of
Denholm, Roxburghshire, in the Scottish Borders.
It stands at
the western and south-western approaches to the village. Dating from the
17th century (the date 1663 appears above the door), it is an example of
a building of that period that was once common in Scotland and is now a
category A listed building.
The name Westgate Hall was used to
distinguish it from another building, East Castle, on the east side of
the village on the road to Jedburgh. It is a two storey house, with a
relatively recent extension and external staircase on the left side of
the building, whose overall dimensions are 55 ft. by 23 ft. There are
four skew-puts (the corner stone that supports the coping of a gable).
The western one bears the heraldic heart of the Douglas family.
Internally at against the right (i.e. north) wall there is an original
large fireplace, 5 ft. 10 in. wide. This includes a large lintel (2 ft.
high) with two recessed panels, the right-most one of which is
octagonal, bearing the initials S A D for Sir Archibald Douglas above
his heraldic sign - a heart with three mullets.
As recorded in
the Register of the Great Seal of Scotland, Charles I granted a charter
to Archibald Douglas, heir to Sir William Douglas of Cavers, for certain
properties including the town and lands of Denholm. Sir William and his
family were barons of Cavers, encompassing the parish of Cavers. This
Barony together with the lands of Cavers, and also the hereditary
sheriffship of Roxburghshire, were possessed by the family of Douglas
until the abolition of heritable jurisdictions in the 18th century.
In 1907 the top floor was made available as a meeting hall by the
Palmer-Douglases(1), when the outside staircase was added, and was so used
until the 1950s.
Palmer-Douglas family, descendants of the Douglases of Cavers, were the
last to occupy Cavers Castle.
Douglas of Cavers