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


Status: Designated


There are no additional online documents for this record.


Date Added
Local Authority
Planning Authority
NK 01686 63964
401686, 863964


Originally: large square tower with corbelled parapet and

angle rounds 41' x 29'8" ground floor perhaps mid 13th

century, 14th century at latest; upper floors 15th century.

Ground and 1st floors vaulted, boulder rubble, original

staircase in thickness of wall, with meurtriere feature at

foot, upper parts now infilled. Smaller circular tower to

S.W. with set back upper floor 1545, made parts of Z-plan

arrangement later in century by linking wing, jamb with

turnpike stair to link with original tower added at same

date. Abandoned 1799, central part of linking building

demolished. Towers restored, courtyard wall demolished and

link building reconstructed (wider on S. than originally)

Jenkins and Marr 1896-7 for Sir John Duthie. Harled with

margins and dressings, sandstone or local heathen stone at

original work, granite at later work. Design of 1st floor S.

windows modified, internal alterations 1966 and some chimney

pieces from Tarbat House inserted.

Statement of Special Interest

for original keep. Originally Philorth belonged to the

Comyns, confiscated 1306, given by Bruce to John Ross, son of

Earl of Ross to Sir Alexander Fraser of Cowie 1375; 1615 sold

to Robert Fraser of Durris renamed Cairnbulg. Sold to Col.

Buchan of Auchmacoy early 18th century and in 1739 to Alex

Aberdein; 1775 to Earl of Aberdeen; bequeathed to Gordon of

Cairbulg (See Mormond) 1801 Sold to Duthies 1862, repurchased

by the present Lord Saltoun 1934.



O.S.A. v.6 p.19 quoted N.S.A. v.12 3.S.A., P.294, p.319. C. &

D. Arch v.1 p.309 (il and plan) Giles, Castles of

Aberdeenshire XX, XXI Lord Saltoun, Cairnbulg Castle Aberdeen

University Review v. XLI p.21-25 (1963) (il and plan) Lord

Saltoun, The Frasers of Philorth (1879) Aberdeen Journal May

21st 1896, Sept. 11th 1897, Aberdeen Evening Express Sept.

11th 1897

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.

Find out more about listing and our other designations at You can contact us on 0131 668 8914 or at


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