Aberdeen City HER - NJ90NW0286 - FITTIE PORT

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Main Details

Primary ReferenceNJ90NW0286
NRHE Card No.NJ90NW24
NRHE Numlink 146276
Site Form Documentary Record Only
Site Condition Destroyed
Details Site of a town gate, also known as Futtie Port or Footdee Port, which controlled access to the Castlegate. Aberdeen had 8 ports or town gates in total that it controlled. The term port in this sense derives from the French port‚ meaning door. In Scotland town's gates or ports are also known as bows, from the arch of the gate. The first evidence for Aberdeen's ports comes from the late date of 1435 but it seems fair to assume that the ports existed from several hundred years before that date. There is evidence in other burghs of ports dating from the 12th century. The Castlegate was in a unique position in Aberdeen having two of Aberdeen's ports: one was the Justice port the other the Fittie port. There is a reference to Fittie Wynd in 1317 but unfortunately there are no early references to the Fittie Port although it was probably of considerable age itself. This was really the primary means of entry into Aberdeen for those who arrived at the harbour, along with the Shiprow Port. This was reflected in the fact that this port along with the Shiprow Port was closed more often than any others, especially at times of plague. This reflects the fact that the ports could defend the city: the ports must have been of some use or they simply would bot have closed them or posted watches at them. The ports were closed for fear of plague as late as the 17th century. By the 18th century, the Fittie port seems to have fallen into some disrepair. However because of its proximity to the heart of the burgh it was of considerable importance: thus in 1710 it was repaired when a French invasion was feared. In fact the Gallowgate, Justice and Fittie ports were to be repaired on 23 June 1710: `The said day the Counsell appoynts the Dean of Gild to repair and help the haill ports of the towne that are deacyed with Oaken Timber'. The port would have been a large stone built structure with an internal gate, which was made out of strong wood, there are references to oak planks being used to make the gates. The gate probably contained an internal wicket. The gates were then secured by catbands, iron straps or bar for securing a gate, and were then no doubt completed by a padlock. The port was probably dismantled in the mid 18th century when Aberdeen Council ordered other ports to be removed in order to ease traffic congestion.
Last Update22/02/2019
Updated Bycpalmer
Date of Compilation13/09/2017

Easting: 394545.066670571, Northing: 806358.252130307

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National Grid Reference: NJ 9454 0635

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