Listed Building

The only legal part of the listing 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.


Status: Designated


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Date Added
Local Authority
Scottish Borders
Planning Authority
Scottish Borders
NT 56662 20118
356662, 620118


William Henry Playfair, 1831. 5-bay, cruciform plan, Gothic revival church with large striking 3-stage tower at E and single storey and basement apsidal-ended burial vault of the Earls of Minto at W. Grey snecked sandstone rubble with droved ashlar dressings. Deep base course; dentilled eaves course. Pointed-arch openings with hoodmoulds and label stops. 3-light windows in nave and chancel and 4-light windows in transepts with Y-tracery, paired lancets at clerestory level.

FURTHER DESCRIPTION: central tower projecting from E gable with 2-leaf boarded and studded timber door recessed in moulded chamfered Tudor arch; single light above; paired louvred lights at belfry level; clock on N face; crenellated corbelled parapet. Single-leaf boarded and studded timber entrance door to left hand bay of N elevation recessed in moulded chamfered arch. Low burial enclosure extending from W gable (roof screened from view); steps, flanked by low wall, extended from base course, to 2-leaf timber-boarded and studded door below ground level.

Predominantly diamond-pane glazing in fixed lights. Welsh slate roof with ashlar ridges and ashlar-coped skews with moulded skewputts. Cast-iron rainwater goods.

INTERIOR: simple flat-ceiling cruciform interior with narrow plaster decorative cornice; Minto loft at E (access via exterior door in tower to private room and loft) with panelled front. Stained glass in W gable window circa 1926. Furnishings date from the 1934 recasting.

GRAVEYARD: 19th and 20th century stones to N and W of church; Minto enclosure surrounded by low wall SW of burial vault, with 20th century stones.

BOUNDARY WALLS, GATEPIERS AND GATES: low rubble boundary walls. Square ashlar gatepiers with mouldings and pyramidal capstones. 20th century wrought-iron gates.

Statement of Special Interest

Ecclesiastical building in use as such. This building is significant in that it is one of only a very few examples of a Gothic design by the prominent Edinburgh architect William Henry Playfair who with his rivals William Burn and James Gillespie Graham was at the top of the Scottish architectural profession from 1816 when he won the competition for the completion of Adam's University building until his death in 1857. His other major Gothic building is the Free Church College (1846-50) on the Mound in Edinburgh. It too is designed in the Tudor style and like Minto is simply detailed but at the same time having considerable presence. Minto Church is one of only two churches known to have been designed by Playfair. Playfair's other church design, St Stephen's in St Vincent Street in Edinburgh, though classical in style, like Minto is restrained in detail yet monumental in composition.

The interior of Minto Church was recast in 1934, but the building is externally little changed. This is a large, solid and imposing building and occupies an prominent position in the centre of the village. Minto is a planned village which was designed and laid out by Playfair for the 2nd Earl of Minto.



Playfair Collection (1829) 39 sheets, page 15, Edinburgh University Library. William Crawford and William Brooke, Map Embracing Extensive Portions of the Counties of Roxburgh, Berwick Selkirk & Midlothian and Part of Northumberland (1843). Shown on 1st edition Ordnance Survey Map (circa 1863). 2nd edition Ordnance Survey Map (circa 1900). Groome, Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland, (1882-5). Scott, H et al. (eds.) Fasti Ecclesiae Scoticanae: the succession of ministers in the Church of Scotland from the Reformation, Edinburgh, (1915-61) vol. ii, pp131-3; vol. viii, p.140. RCAHMS. An inventory of the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Roxburghshire: with the fourteenth report of the Commission, 2v, (1928) 324, No 625. Kitty Cruft, John Dunbar, Richard Fawcett, Buildings of Scotland: Borders (2006) p568-9.

About Listed Buildings

Listing is the way that a building or structure of special architectural or historic interest is recognised by law through the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997.

We list buildings of special architectural or historic interest using the criteria published in the Historic Environment Scotland Policy Statement.

The information in the listed building record gives an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building(s). It is not a definitive historical account or a complete description of the building(s). 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 only legal part of the listing is the address/name of site. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing and if a number or name is missing from a listing address it may still be listed. Listing covers both the exterior and the interior and any object or structure fixed to the building. Listing can also cover structures not physically attached but which are part of the curtilage of the building, such as boundary walls, gates, gatepiers, ancillary buildings etc. The planning authority is responsible for advising on what is covered by the listing including the curtilage of a listed building. Since 1 October 2015 we have been able to exclude items from a listing. 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 Historic Environment Scotland Act 2014. 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 current legislation.

If you want to alter, extend or demolish a listed building you need to contact your planning authority to see if you need listed building consent. The planning authority advises on the need for listed building consent and they also decide what a listing covers. The planning authority is the main point of contact for all applications for listed building consent.

Find out more about listing and our other designations at You can contact us on 0131 668 8716 or at


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Printed: 20/03/2019 01:11