William Burn, 1818-1825, Tudor mansion, incorporating 15th century towerhouse to W, a 2-storey, 4-bay addition to E, 1769-1775, alterations by Robert Burn in 1803; converted to flats, Robin Jell, 1967-1971.
Sited on high ground by Birns Water to N of West Saltoun. 3-storey and basement main block with taller rectangular tower, and 2-storey and basement wing to E. Pink sandstone ashlar with base course, hoodmoulds, chamfered and cavetto reveals and crenellated parapet; stone mullions; rendered and lined repairs to S and W.
MAIN BLOCK: roughly square in plan, around tower.
N ELEVATION: 7-bay. 5 recessed bays at centre linked to full-height square pavilions by single storey crenellated loggia; loggia comprised of set-off buttresses dividing 3 4-centred archways; narrow windows flanking. 4-centred doorway at centre closely flanked by narrow windows and with 4-centred openings to each end of loggia, blinded with Gothic panelling. Ribbed stone vault with ornately carved bosses and capitals. Bipartite windows to pavilions at ground and 1st floor, smaller single windows at 2nd.
S ELEVATION: 6-bay. SW pair of bays set at obtuse angle on ground falling to Birns Water; 4 bays to right, 1769-76, with rectangular entrance bay projecting off-centre to left in tower form, breaking main parapet with further crenellated parapet; wrought-iron railings to steps leading to deeply graded reveal of 4-centred doorway; windows in ground floor bays, smaller at 1st and 2nd floors (4-centres in 4 2nd floor bays to centre and right). Corbelled bartizans at 2nd floor with glazed arrow slits and parapets.
W ELEVATION: 7 irregular bays, largely 15th century, in splayed line. Circular tower off-centre to right. 2 blinded windows.
E WING: William Burn. 5-bay N elevation with outer left bay as square pavilion; tripartite and traceried windows at ground, 4-centred bipartites at 1st floor (tripartite in pavilion). 3-stage circular tower set in re-entrant angle with main block. Crenellated porte-cochere on E elevation with polygonal piers and 4-centre archways and windows; circular, crenellated stair tower to left of entrance. 7-bay S elevation with 3 bays to left of centre canted; windows to each floor in each bay, some 4-centred. Small- and horziontal-pane glazing patterns to sash and case windows. Decorative cans retained.
INTERIOR: largely by William Burn in Gothic style. Saloon particularly fine, rectangular in plan with side galleries over 4-centred archways with rib vaulted soffits to passages; ribbed spandrels below circular whispering gallery and octagonal rotunda; ornate ceiling. Panelled library with marble chimneypiece and ribbed ceiling.
TERRACES: crenellated ashlar parapet with polygonal piers to buttressed terrace by Birns Water at E.
ENCLOSURE: circular tradesman's bay to E of house, comprised of cast-iron railings, open to N.
Statement of Special Interest
Ancestral home of the Fletcher family. 3 very famous figures, Lord Innerpeffer, Judge; Andrew Fletcher, patriot; and Lord Milton, Lord of Session. Style echoes Gothic revival essays of Sir Robert Smirke at Kinmount, Dumfriesshire, 1812 and Lowther Castle, Westmorland, 1806-11. Outstanding collection of books amassed by the Fletchers, formerly housed in splendid library. Watercolour by Littlejohn illustrates the house before the Burn alterations. North and South Lodges, Home Farm, Walled Garden and Garden Cottage are each listed separately and the Dovecot and West Lodge are listed in Pencaitland Parish. The bridge across the Birns Water was washed away in 1948 and the Gas Works of 1870 were recently demolished.