Five facts about historic Northumberland pele tower

Cresswell residents and members of the Pele Tower restoration project Louise Wright and Mavis Dance are pictured in the ruined pele tower with historian Barry Mead, who is also involved in the project.
Cresswell residents and members of the Pele Tower restoration project Louise Wright and Mavis Dance are pictured in the ruined pele tower with historian Barry Mead, who is also involved in the project.

An open day is being held on Sunday to explain the restoration proposals for the 600-year-old Cresswell pele tower.

It will take place between 11am and 3pm. Visitors are asked to meet at Cresswell Village Hall to be taken on conducted tours to the tower and find out more about the project led by Cresswell Parish Council, with the support of Greater Morpeth Development Trust and the CELL Big Local regeneration scheme.

The following are some facts about the building and the current situation.

1. The tower was built by the Cresswell family in the 15th century as a defence against the Border Reivers moving south into England from the Scottish Borders.

2. Although now virtually a ruin, the significance of the pele tower has been recognised by Historic England through its designation as a Scheduled Ancient Monument and a Grade II* Listed Building. However, because of its poor state of repair, it is also on Historic England’s register of ‘at risk’ structures.

3. The tower is currently owned by the proprietors of the nearby Cresswell Towers Holiday Park.

4. The full cost of restoration has been estimated at £750,000, including roofing, repairing and re-laying floors, installing lighting, a water supply and a first floor viewing gallery. The cost also includes plans for community archaeology and archive projects.

5. The parish council was awarded a £10,000 start-up grant by the Heritage Lottery Fund in 2014 to progress the development of its plans. It is hoping to submit a full heritage grant application in December.