A stately home steeped in history
Carberry Tower has the look of a house with a few stories to tell, and you will not be disappointed – there is a fascinating past, featuring many royal visitors, waiting to be discovered.
The land on which Carberry Tower now sits were first mentioned in the 11th century when King David I of Scotland granted the site to the monks of Dunfermline Abbey. The first person to lease the site was Jonh de Crebarrie, but it was the Johnstone family who built the actual tower, a simple defensive structure.
In 1541, Hugh Rigg, the King's Advocate, then leased the lands from the abbey. In 1567, on Carberry Hill, part of the estate, Mary, Queen of Scots, faced an army assembled by a rebellious confederation of her Lords. After a hot day of intense battle lasting over 6 hours, and with barely anything to drink, Mary realised that her men could not carry on the struggle. She surrendered herself to the Lords and was then imprisoned. A monument, the Queen's Mount, still stands in the grounds commemorating the incident.
In 1659 the estate passed to Sir Adam Blair of Lochwood, but that family only lived there for 30 years before the property was transferred to Sir Robert Dickson of Inveresk. In 1745 the tower was once again witness to history - Sir Dickson's son, also Robert, was the Chief Baillie of Musselburgh when rebel Jacobite troops passed between Carberry and Musselburgh on their way to the Battle of Prestonpans.
In 1760 the grand tower that stands before you today began to take shape when John Fullerton took possession of the estate. Records suggest that over the years the extensions were being built, piece by piece, in an anti-clockwise direction. John's niece, Elizabeth, married the Honourable William Elphinstone in 1774 and the house passed into the Elphinstone family in 1801.
William Elphinstone, 15th Lord Elphinstone, inherited the estate in 1861 and it was he who was largely responsible for the complete redesign of the estate. His son, Sydney Herbert, 16th Lord Elphinstone, married Lady Mary Bowes-Lyon, sister of Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother. The couple made great improvements to both the house and estate, particularly the laying out of the formal garden in 1911.
Lord Sydney died in 1955 and his wife, Lady Mary died six years later in 1961. Lady Mary bequeathed the tower to the Church of Scotland. They used Carberry Tower as a conference centre, building an annexe and chapel (now the Ceilidh Hall). In 2004 the Carberry Tower was sold to Gartmore House charitable trust, and in 2008 it underwent major refurbishment.
In April 2011, AmaZing Venues acquired the property and made more refurbishments, transforming it into the luxurious property you see today.
According to the history of Carberry Tower the following bedrooms were inhabited at times by the following members of the Royal Family:
206 - This room was used by Queen Elizabeth II as a dressing room on her visit in 1968
207 - The bedroom of the late Queen Mother on the many occasions that she visited her sister Mary, with a view of the Rose Garden and Carberry Hill.
211 - This room was the Day Nursery with views of the old keep. Many are the stories of Queen Elizabeth II and her sister Princess Margaret when they visited their cousins.
210 - Governesses room, situated between the Day and Night Nurseries.
212- This room was the Night Nursery where Queen Elizabeth and Princess Margaret slept.
Learn more at: http://www.amazingvenues.co.uk/CarberryTower
Our wonderful Carberry Tower is a traditional Scottish castle dating back to the mid-15th Century and nestled in 35 glorious acres of landscaped grounds. This oasis of calm and tranquility is conveniently located just 7 miles from Edinburgh and features wonderful transport links.
The Tower has a rich history and boasts royal connections with Mary Queen of Scots surrendering to her rebellious nobles here in 1567 to more recently when it was the former home to Lady Mary Bowes-Lyon, sister of the late Queen Mother.
Recent refurbishment of the Tower has been sensitively conducted, ensuring that original features, including grand staircases and imposing fireplaces are maintained. The building now offers extensive facilities including a range of inviting accommodation options, consisting of 30 uniquely opulent bedroom suites, as well 10 meeting and event rooms, plus the separate Ceilidh Hall which provides endless opportunities for creative projects.
This Hall offers a spacious and flexible environment for a wide range of different events and filming opportunities. It has a reception and dining area with large glass doors that open up onto our beautiful grounds. The Whisky Bar features solid oak furnishings, comfy club chairs and a bar lined with bottles of Scotch whisky. It presents the perfect hide away for intimate scenes and even has a roulette table. The Princess Elizabeth Lounge boasts rich wood paneling and floors, an ornate plaster ceiling, an impressive grand piano and huge windows overlooking the estate and beyond. Carberry Tower also boasts a private lake, a Health Hut, a large Billiards Room and the atmospheric Garden Pavilion - perfect for when your shoot requires something a little extra special.
Whatever you are looking for, Carberry Tower offers a historic setting suitable for any filming or photography event. Let us know your brief and we will be sure to make your vision become a reality.