Lothians: About 3 miles south-east of Tranent, east of B6355, 0.75 miles north of Pencaitland, north of Tyne Water, at Winton House.
Private NT 439696 OS: 66 EH34 5AT
OPEN: Guided tours only (minimum group size 20): tel to confirm. Wedding venue, corporate events and luxury self-catering accommodation. Walks around the estate.
Tel: 01875 340222 Web: www.wintonhouse.co.uk
Winton House, a Renaissance mansion dating from 1620 with later additions, incorporates a 15th-century castle. There are some fine 17th-century plaster ceilings, decorated in honour of Charles I,
as well as unique stone twisted chimneys, both added by William Wallace, the king’s Master Mason. Later 19th-century additions were destroyed by a fire in 1881. There are fine terraced gardens and
‘Wintoun’ is marked on Blaeu’s map of The Lothians in a large enclosed and wooded park. ‘Winton’ is marked on Adair’s map of East Lothian in large enclosed policies with formal gardens and woodland.
The lands were originally held by the Winton family in the 12th century, but passed to the de Quincy family. Winton was granted to the Setons after the de Quincys were forfeited by Robert the Bruce around 1320. Lord Seton (also see Seton Castle ) built a castle here about 1480, which was later sacked by the English. The Setons were made Earls of Winton in 1600, and much of the present house dates from 1620. Charles I visited in 1633.
George, the 5th Earl, was forfeited for his part in the Jacobite Rising of 1715 and imprisoned in the Tower of London after being captured at Preston, although he managed to escape and went to Rome. The property was sold to the York Building Company along with Seton Palace, then to the Hamilton Lords Pencaitland in 1779, then passed to the Nisbet Hamiltons in 1885, then to the Ogilvys in 1920. The house is still occupied.
Pencaitland Parish Church [NT 443690] is a fine old building, with work from as early as the 12th century, rebuilt in the 16th century and later with the Winton Aisle and the Saltoun Aisle. There are some interesting old memorials in the burial ground.