Wick KW1 Keiss

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  • H Council Band
Ref: INV230077
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Features at a glance

  • Historic Grade-B listed castle
  • 2-Bedroom gate lodge
  • 4-Bedroom Farmhouse
  • Keiss Mains Farm (approx. 786 Acres)
  • Former Keiss Castle (ruin)
  • Approx. 1 mile of sea frontage
  • In all approx. 792.36 Acres
  • For sale as a whole

A substantial and historic landmark Castle & Estate occupying an imposing coastal setting on the East Coast of Caithness in Northern Scotland

The Property Keiss Estate provides a spectacular coastal estate on the eastern coast of the County of Caithness in Northern Scotland with historical interest and boasting a great deal of amenity and scenic grandeur. The estate is centred on Keiss Castle with walled garden and polices. There remains the ruins of the 16th century Keiss Castle on the cliff top to the east of the newer castle, both structures being significant local landmarks. There are ancillary residential properties, being a gate lodge, farmhouse (sub-divided into 2 apartments) a castle apartment and adjacent stores and garages.

The estate boasts a significant farm, Keiss Mains which is a productive arable and stock farm with a modern and traditional farm steading. The farm is currently subject to a 5 years SLDT lease, detailed below.

The estate enjoys approximately 1 mile of sea frontage to Sinclair’s Bay.

Keiss Castle Keiss Castle is an imposing and significant 18th-century Scottish Baronial property with a wealth of history and retained features of its time. It comprises over 11,300 sq. ft of adaptable accommodation over four floors and lies as the centrepiece of the estate which also includes further residential properties and a let arable and stock farm. The castle is now in need of refurbishment, upgrading and modernisation. The Castle (together with the gate house, walled garden and gate piers) are listed as B grade by Historic Scotland.

To the front of the castle are two sets of double doors open to the reception hall with useful cloakroom, and to a generous array of versatile reception rooms offering fine features including bay and shuttered windows and original doors, flooring, fireplaces, stonework and cornice, some of which is in need of restoration. There is a kitchen space and stairway to the rear, a bathroom, and WC, as well as an elegant central spiral stairway and a striking ornate turned staircase.

The expansive first floor houses five further reception rooms, including a snug, formal dining room and family room with feature fireplaces and the grand sizeable adjacent multi-aspect sitting room and drawing room with stunning coastal views. There is also a kitchen, utility, cloakroom and one of nine total bedrooms being well served by a shower room alongside. The second floor is home to seven characterful bedrooms with impressive, elevated aspects, as well as an in-keeping family bathroom with a roll top freestanding bathtub, shower room and WC. On the third floor is an additional family bathroom, bedroom, shower room, cloakroom and three further adaptable spaces including a charming games room with a spiral staircase.

Castle apartment Garages & Stable Adjacent to the castle is a 1 ½ storey traditional terrace of buildings constructed of stone and slate, with a paved courtyard to the front. This terrace comprises a 2-bedroom apartment with sitting room and bathroom, two garages and a stable.

Gatehouse At the entrance to the estate, adjacent to the main road, is an attractive stone-built gatehouse set under a pitched slated roof, with modern block constructed extension, accommodation which includes a family room, kitchen, two bedrooms and shower room.

Farmhouse A recently renovated 2-storey traditional farmhouse, currently separated into two 2-bedroom properties, both with kitchen/breakfast rooms, receptions rooms and bathroom facilities. The farmhouse is currently vacant but provides excellent long term or holiday letting potential. Note - the farmhouse is out with the SLDT farm tenancy agreement.

Former Keiss Castle (ruin & scheduled ancient monument) On the eastern boundary perched on the sea frontage overlooking Sinclairs Bay is the original 16th century Keiss Castle, which is now a ruin and also scheduled ancient monument. It is in poor condition and is fenced off for access – note: care should be taken on inspection of this building due to its condition.

Keiss Mains Farm

The farm at Keiss surrounds the Castle and extends to approximately 786 Acres (318 Ha) in total. The entirety of the farm (which does not including the farmhouse) is let under a 5-year SLDT tenancy at a current rent of £23,000 per annum. The lease commenced as at 20th April 2022. A copy of the lease document is available on request from the selling agents.

The farm comprises an arable and stock farm which extends to approximately 786 Acres (318 Ha) being a blend of arable, pasture and rough grazing. The land has a south easterly aspect and is graded as a combination of grades 3(2), 4(1), 4(2) 5(2) & 6(3) and range in height from sea level to approximately 70 metres.

These acreages of Keiss Mains Farm can be very approximately summarised as follows:

Arable 152 Acres Pasture 134 Acres Rough Grazings 495 Acres Buildings etc 5 Acres Total 786 Acres

The farm includes a modern and traditional farm steading which is easily accessed from the main road and the details of which can be summarised as follows:

• Cattle Court – approximately 26.93m x 20.98 Steel portal frame, central feed passage, block lower walls, corrugated roof covering

• Slurry storage tank

• General Purpose Store – approximately 24.33m x 18.3m Steel portal frame, concrete floor, corrugated roof, upper metal space board cladding, lower block walls.

• Range of traditional buildings including stores, former courts, cubicle shed, byres, lofted stores etc.

• 2 silage pits

This property has 792.36 acres of land.


Outside A long tree lined private driveway gives access to the castle which sits in a considerable and established coastal location. There is a large area of surrounding lawned land with a handsome stone and turreted wall enclosing formal gardens, which is listed B grade by Historic Scotland, enjoying striking views to the 16th century former Keiss Castle (Ruin) and the coastline with spectacular views over Sinclairs Bay.


Location Keiss Castle Estate is situated approximately 8.6 miles to the north of the town of Wick in the heart of the most northerly county of mainland UK, Caithness. It is situated in an area of Caithness which is well known as a productive farming district on account of the quality of soils, favourable climate, relatively low rainfall, and moderately level ground.

Wick has a population of around 7,000, and provides a good range of retail, commercial and education facilities. Its railway station offers daily services to Inverness and Wick Airport which offers regular domestic flights to Aberdeen and is a popular airport for private aircraft as a refuel stop between North America and Europe. Approximately 16 miles to the west of the Estate is the town of Thurso, which lies close to the port of Scrabster and is a gateway to the north, with daily ferry services to Orkney and is a port of call for visiting cruise ships

The area around Keiss is a well-established agricultural area has a good range of suppliers and contractors. The Caithness Machinery Ring is situated at Halkirk (18 miles). There is a local livestock market at Quoybrae which has regular sales throughout the year. Alternatively, there are also weekly sales in Dingwall, which is approximately 100 miles to the south.

In contrast to the mountainous county of Sutherland to the west, Caithness is a land of open, rolling farmland, moorland and scattered settlements. The area is fringed to the north and east by dramatic coastal scenery and is home to large, internationally important colonies of seabirds. The surrounding waters of the Pentland Firth and the North Sea hold a great diversity of marine life.

Amongst salmon and trout fishermen, Caithness is held in very high regard. The River Thurso, which runs for 20 miles from Loch More in the heart of the County to the sea at Thurso, is one of the most prolific salmon rivers in Britain. Rods can be rented on either a daily or a weekly basis. Flowing southeast for several miles from Loch Watten to the sea, the nearby River Wick is also a well-regarded salmon river with rods available on a daily basis throughout the season. There are a further seven salmon rivers lying to the south and west within around one-hour drive, including famous rivers such as the Helmsdale, Halladale and Naver.

The lochs of Scarmclate and Watten have a reputation as being some of Scotland’s best wild brown trout fisheries. With an underlying seam of limestone, Loch Watten is famed for producing consistently large trout. In addition to Loch Watten (the second largest loch in Caithness), there are several hundred trout lochs of all shapes and sizes scattered throughout Caithness and Sutherland, offering almost endless opportunities for the keen angler, within close range of the estate. Sea angling off the Caithness coast is well renowned. Bait and lure fishing for cod, coley, ling, wrasse, mackerel and even fly-fishing for pollock can make for some fantastic sport.

For surfing enthusiasts, the north coast is well recognised amongst Europe's premier heavy water destinations. Good solid ground swells and southerly winds combine to create ideal surf conditions, which have attracted the attention of some of the world’s top surfers. Known as the ‘North Shore’, the surf can be huge and is relatively consistent. The quality of the surfing in Caithness is such that Thurso East (together with venues in Canada, Tasmania, South Africa and California) is one of the venues for the O’Neill Cold Water Classic Series.

Golf is a feature of the area with 18-hole links courses locally at Wick and Reay, an 18-hole parkland course at Thurso and a 9-hole course at Lybster, south of Wick. In addition, the internationally regarded Championship Course at Royal Dornoch is about 68 miles to the south.

Caithness is well known for its royal connection with the Castle of Mey, one of the former homes of the late Queen Mother. The Castle of Mey is situated approximately 12 miles to the north west of Keiss Estate and is open to visitors, together with its fabulous garden, from May through to September.


What3words: ///read.digit.bonnet. From Wick take the B876 north to Reiss where a right turn is taken onto the A99 signposted to Jon O’Groats. On entering the village of Keiss the entrance to the estate is found after approximately ½ mile through gates on the right hand side of the main road.

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