Listed Building

The only legal part of the listing under the Planning (Listing Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997 is the address/name of site. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing – see 'About Listed Buildings' below for more information. The further details below the 'Address/Name of Site' are provided for information purposes only.

Address/Name of Site

Ice Factor (Carbon Factory Silos to Former Kinlochleven Aluminium Works), Kinlochleven LB12926

Status: Designated


Where documents include maps, the use of this data is subject to terms and conditions (


Date Added
Last Date Amended
Local Authority
Planning Authority
Lismore And Appin
NN 18834 61915
218834, 761915


P W Meik, (Thomas Meik and Sons) chief engineer, Alfred H Roberts, resident engineer, Sir W Murray Morrison, manager and technical advisor, Sir John Jackson Ltd, principal contractor. 1904-9. Tall rubble-built ranges, including early re-inforced concrete silos, forming one side of the carbon factory which was largely demolished in 1989.

The small silo (NN 18829 61952) is a 5-bay gabled block with a buttressed northwest elevation. There are 5 small ground floor windows, and 2 first floor narrow round-headed windows over concrete diamond features. The northeast and southeast elevations of the building are plain, and formerly adjoined the factory (now demolished) and was linked to it by twin arches. There is metal sheet cladding to the northeast gable.

There is a slate roof with a curved ridge ventilator and a flat-roofed single storey block to the southwest re-entrant angle, with a large opening and door. There is a linking 2-bay screen wall adjoin the main silo block, with reinforced concrete buttresses and a lintel course.

The main silo block (NN 18834 61915) has 7 buttressed bays to the southwest elevation with tall round-headed openings to reveal concrete wall of the silo at the first floor.

The northwest gable of the main silo block (the entrance elevation) has a stepped up inverted mansard roof to cap-house and a wide basket arched opening at attic level which was formerly broached by a conyeyor from an adjoining small single storey block that fed silos (demolished in 1989, it had curved corners and piended slate roof). The wall is whitewashed where this block adjoined.

The northeast elevation of the main silo block is 7-bays with an exposed trabeated reinforced concrete frame and a flat reinforced concrete roof which wraps around to the southeast gable elevation. The elevation is entirely glazed up to the flat roof to the northeast, and the glazing dates to the 1990s.

Statement of Special Interest

The former Kinlochleven Aluminium Works silos, known as the 'Ice Factor' (2016), are some of the last remaining buildings of this former carbon factory, along with the former smelter and powerhouse (see separate listing). The aluminium works was one of the largest in the world at the time however due to changes in demand, outdated Soderbergh technology and economies of scale the smelter was closed in 2000, resulting in the removal of many of the structures.

The architectural treatment of the former silo buildings in a plain classical style is an early example of a more functional design ethic being developed for industrial buildings. This plain classical yet modern design was influential on the later stylistic development of buildings for hydropower. The fusion of plain classical and purely functional elements represented the modern and dynamic perception of the industry at this time.

"It is from this carbon factory that there exudes the dense yellowish smoke that has provoked so much criticism of the village" (Gregor and Chisholm). The bulk of the carbon factory was demolished in late 1989. The silos are recognised as an early reinforced concrete structure remarkable for its combination of steel girder and concrete roof.

Statutory address and listed building record revised in 2016. Previously listed as 'Kinlochleven Aluminium Works, Carbon Factory and Silos'.



Alfred H Roberts "The Loch Leven Water-power Works" Minutes of Proceedings of the Institute of Civil Engineers. Vol CLXXXVII (1911) pp28-141.

J Cuthrie Brown "Sixty Years of Hydro-electric Development in Britain" The Structural Engineer (Nov 1956) pp375-380.

Gregor M. and Chisholm R. From Croft to Factory (1946) Thomas Nelson and Sons Ltd: London.

British Alcan Highland Smelters Ltd, Aluminium in the Scottish Highlands. [accessed 24.08.2015].

About Listed Buildings

Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating sites and places at the national level. These designations are Scheduled monuments, Listed buildings, Inventory of gardens and designed landscapes and Inventory of historic battlefields.

We make recommendations to the Scottish Government about historic marine protected areas, and the Scottish Ministers decide whether to designate.

Listing is the process that identifies, designates and provides statutory protection for buildings of special architectural or historic interest as set out in the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997.

We list buildings which are found to be of special architectural or historic interest using the selection guidance published in Designation Policy and Selection Guidance (2019)

Listed building records provide an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building which has been identified by its statutory address. The description and additional information provided are supplementary and have no legal weight.

These records are not definitive historical accounts or a complete description of the building(s). If part of a building is not described it does not mean it is not listed. The format of the listed building record has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

The legal part of the listing is the address/name of site which is known as the statutory address. Other than the name or address of a listed building, further details are provided for information purposes only. Historic Environment Scotland does not accept any liability for any loss or damage suffered as a consequence of inaccuracies in the information provided. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing. Even if a number or name is missing from a listing address it will still be listed. Listing covers both the exterior and the interior and any object or structure fixed to the building. Listing also applies to buildings or structures not physically attached but which are part of the curtilage (or land) of the listed building as long as they were erected before 1 July 1948.

While Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating listed buildings, the planning authority is responsible for determining what is covered by the listing, including what is listed through curtilage. However, for listed buildings designated or for listings amended from 1 October 2015, legal exclusions to the listing may apply.

If part of a building is not listed, it will say that it is excluded in the statutory address and in the statement of special interest in the listed building record. The statement will use the word 'excluding' and quote the relevant section of the 1997 Act. Some earlier listed building records may use the word 'excluding', but if the Act is not quoted, the record has not been revised to reflect subsequent legislation.

Listed building consent is required for changes to a listed building which affect its character as a building of special architectural or historic interest. The relevant planning authority is the point of contact for applications for listed building consent.

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Printed: 24/06/2024 01:52