Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Culross Palace dig discovers east wing

Archaeological dig
Image caption The dig has uncovered 17th Century foundations

One of Fife's most historic buildings could have had an east wing, according to new evidence uncovered by archaeologists.

Foundations of previously unrecorded buildings, including a series of foundations and paving, suggest Culross Palace may have had an east wing.

The National Trust for Scotland made the discovery while excavating ahead of work on a 19th Century bothy.

Work on the bothy can start once the 17th Century foundations are recorded.

Archaeologist Daniel Rhodes said: "This is a significant find at Culross, adding a great deal to what we know about the town and its development.

"We're having some further analyses of the metal and ceramic artefacts uncovered.

"That should go some way to giving a date for the abandonment and demolition of these earlier buildings, as well as shedding new light on our understanding of the history of Culross."

Scott McMaster, National Trust for Scotland property manager, said: "Culross has such a long history, so it's very exciting to find out something new which tells us more about this ancient place that's under our care."

Image caption Culross Palace is an early 17th century merchant's house in Culross, Fife

Culross Palace is an early 17th century merchant's house in Culross, Fife.

The palace, or "Great Lodging", was constructed by 1611 by Sir George Bruce, the Laird of Carnock.

Sir George was a successful merchant who had a flourishing trade with other Forth ports, the Low Countries and the Baltic countries.

He had interests in coal mining and salt production, and is credited with sinking the world's first coal mine to extend under the sea.

Many of the materials used in the construction of the palace were obtained during the course of Sir George's foreign trade.

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