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- Category: A
- Group Category Details: A
- Date Added: 26/01/1971
- Local Authority: Moray
- Planning Authority: Moray
- Parish: Bellie
National Grid Reference
- NGR: NJ 35069 59570
- Coordinates: 335069, 859570
MANSION HOUSE: John Baxter, 1769-83; repaired after fire. Archibald Simpson, 1827; remodelled in present form by Schomberg Scott, 1961-5. Substantial castellated Georgian, symmetrical 2-storey range. Tooled ashlar, polished ashlar dressings.
N entrance front with principal 7-bay elevation and further lower 2-storey, 6-bay range extending E. 7-bay symmetrical return W gable and extensive S garden front with conservatory/orangery at SE. Principal entrance in N front in slightly advanced 3 centre bays; pedimented and keystoned doorpiece with monograms on lintel dated 1965; moulded architraves to windows; round-headed windows in lower E block.
Pedimented and keystoned entrance in centre of symmetrical 7-bay W front, again with centre 3 bays slightly advanced.
Extensive S garden front with varied but regular fenestration similar to that on N elevation.
Sash and case windows, mainly 12-pane glazing. Corbelled and crenellated wallhead; coped stacks; shallow piended slate roof.
INTERIOR: entrance lobby leads to octagonal central hall from which (1965) curved staircase rises to circular 1st floor top-lit landing with re-used 18th century white marble chimneypiece. Further reused marble chimneypieces in 1st floor drawing room and ground floor library/study. 1827 Simpsonesque key-pattern doorpieces; moulded ceiling cornices; panelled doors and window reveals.
CONSERVATORY-ORANGERY: probably Archibald Simpson, circa 1830. Tooled ashlar. Tall fenestrated 9-bay front with similar windows in return gables, all with lying-pane glazing. Shallow piended glazed roof.
GATE-PIERS: probably 1769-82 and possibly re-sited. Pair tall square ashlar gatepiers flank drive to N entrance of mansion. Moulded caps support carved stone eagles.
Statement of Special Interest
The origins of Gordon Castle are said to date from 1275 and 1540, when the property was known as the Bog o' Gight, the seat of the Earls, Marquis's and subsequently the Dukes of Gordon (and Richmond). It is now the property of the Gordon-Lennox family.
The early tower was incorporated in a circa 1700 mansion which was remodelled and greatly enlarged for the 4th Duke of Gordon by John Baxter, architect, Edinburgh, 1769-82.
The E wing of the castle was damaged by fire in 1827, repaired with some internal modifications by Archibald Simpson, Aberdeen. In 1961 extensive portions of the mansion were demolished, leaving the E wing as the sole dwelling, the ancient tower as a freestanding block in the centre of the range and at the W the former stables/carriage house, which became the Home Farm steading. The architect for this final stage was Schomberg Scott, Edinburgh, 1961-65.
For purposes of listing, Gordon Castle has been divided into 4 items.
1. Mansion house with gatepiers and conservatory/orangery.
4. Home Farm Steading.
Anon. THE SURVEY OF MORAY (1798), p. 311. NEW STATISTICAL
ACCOUNT (1842), p. 119. J and W Watson, MORAYSHIRE DESCRIBED
(1868), pp. 80-6. Howard Colvin, A BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF
BRITISH ARCHITECTS, 1600-1840 (1978), pp. 100, 650, 707, 737.
Scottish Record Office, RHP 1056-1071 and GD 44/49/16.
Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for the designation of buildings, monuments, gardens and designed landscapes and historic battlefields. We also advise Scottish Ministers on the designation of historic marine protected areas.
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.
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