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- Category: B
- Date Added: 16/08/1999
- Supplementary Information Updated: 16/08/1999
- Local Authority: Scottish Borders
- Planning Authority: Scottish Borders
- Parish: Bunkle And Preston
National Grid Reference
- NGR: NT 83224 56426
- Coordinates: 383224, 656426
18th century, rebuilt 1897, with later additions and alterations. 2-storey with basement, 9-bay gabled house (grouped 2-1-3-1-2); near H-plan with flat-roofed porch at centre; gabled wing extended to outer right; later flat-roofed, single storey addition to outer left. Harl-pointed tooled cream sandstone rubble; sandstone ashlar dressings (droved in part). Moulded eaves course to sides and rear; tooled quoins (stugged in part); stugged long and short surrounds to raised margins; flush cills throughout.
NW (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: wide balustraded stone stair at centre oversailing basement. Flat-roofed, 3-bay porch centred at ground with advanced central entrance comprising 2-leaf timber panelled and dentilled door, architraved surround, coat-of-arms in surmounting panel, flanking polygonal columns (engaged) on panelled plinths; single windows in recessed flanking bays; continuous cornice and blocking course. 3-bay kneelered gable aligned above entrance with round-arched window at centre; square-headed windows to right and left; corbelled apex stack. Windows at basement flanking entrance; large windows aligned at ground; small, gabled windows breaking eaves at 1st floor with windows to right and left respectively. Full-height, 2-bay gabled wing slightly advanced to outer left fully fenestrated
blocked at basement to right); blind rectangular-panel centred in kneelered gablehead; surmounting apex stack. Full-height, 2-bay gabled wing projecting to outer right (further than that to left) fully fenestrated; blind rectangular panel centred in kneelered gablehead; surmounting apex stack. Flat-roofed, single storey addition with walled and hoop-railed courtyard to front adjoined to outer left.
SW (SIDE) ELEVATION: 5-bay at ground. Full-height gabled bay advanced to outer left with bipartite window at basement; large bipartite window aligned at ground floor; bipartite window breaking eaves at 1st floor; blind rectangular panel centred in kneelered gablehead. Window at basement in subsequent bay to right. Windows at all floors in remaining 4 bays to right (upper, gabled windows breaking eaves; blocked basement openings in 2 bays to outer right).
SE (REAR) ELEVATION: 7-bay, grouped 1-5-1. 5-bay block recessed at centre with small windows to basement; windows in all bays at ground; round-arched window in corbelled gablehead breaking eaves at centre; corniced apex stack; gabled windows breaking eaves in remaining bays to left and right. Full-height gabled wings advanced to outer left and right with 2 single windows at basement; large tripartite windows centred at ground; windows centred at 1st floor (blocked and beneath eaves course to left; breaking eaves course to right); blind panels centred in gableheads; surmounting apex stacks. Flat-roofed, single storey, 4-bay block recessed to outer right.
NE (SIDE) ELEVATION: later single storey block with railed enclosure to front projecting at basement. 5-bay block behind with various square-headed openings (predominantly blocked); round-arched window breaking eaves at centre. Projecting 3-bay wing recessed to outer right with single and bipartite windows at basement; single windows in all bays at ground (narrow opening to outer left); gabled bipartite window centred above, breaking eaves.
4-, 8- and 12-pane glazing in timber sash and case windows; small rooflights at rear. Grey slate roof; stone-coped skews; rolled skewputts with embossed floral motifs at rear. Coped and corniced ridge, wallhead and apex stacks (predominantly rendered); octagonal cans. Cast-iron rainwater goods.
INTERIOR: refurbished late 20th century. Entrance hall with modern floor covering; part panelled, part plain painted walls. Decorative cornice with prominent dentils. Timber panelled doors throughout; some pilastered and corniced surrounds; some shouldered window surrounds. Reception rooms with boarded timber floors; various fireplaces (that in the dining room dated '1897'); timber dado panelling in part; decorative cornices; some panelled ceilings. Main dogleg stair comprising balustered uprights, square-plan, panelled timber newels with carved finials, panelled dado lining stair-well. 1st floor bedrooms with plain plasterwork. Extensive basement with timber panelled doors; service bells and dumb waiter in place; cellar.
GATEPIERS: square-plan, coursed and tooled cream sandstone piers flanking main entrance to E (obscured by foliage to N). Corniced, pyramidal caps; gates missing.
Statement of Special Interest
Designs for Blanerne House, for centuries property of the Lumsdaine family, were drawn up by William Burn, circa 1830. According to Colvin, it remains unclear as to whether these designs were executed. Gutted by fire in 1895, the "...large and commodious mansion of modern construction" (OS Name Book) was rebuilt and complete by 1897 - hence the dated fireplace. The extent of this rebuilding is also unclear, but the fact that the plan forms shown on both the 1862 and 1900 Ordnance Survey maps are very similar, would seem to indicate that the gutted house was used as the basis for reconstruction. An impressive, well-detailed structure, Blanerne retains some interesting features both inside and out - the kneelered gables, columnar porch, decorative plasterwork and variety of fireplaces being amongst the notable. Used as a school for a time, it is now in private ownership. Both the walled garden and the ruinous remains of Blanerne Castle are listed separately.
J Hardy THE SESSION BOOK OF BUNKLE & PRESTON 1665-1690 (transcribed & annotated, 1900) p39. Armstrong's map, 1771 ("Blanerne House" evident). NEW STATISTICAL ACCOUNT OF SCOTLAND (1845) p119. Ordnance Survey Name Book (1856-1858) Reel 60, Book 5, NMRS. Ordnance Survey map, 1862 (evident). RUTHERFURD'S SOUTHERN COUNTIES' REGISTER AND DIRECTORY (1866, reprinted 1990) pp633-634. F H Groome ORDNANCE GAZETTEER OF SCOTLAND (1882) p200 (Blanerne estate). Ordnance Survey map, 1900 (evident). C A Strang BORDERS AND BERWICK: AN ILLUSTRATED ARCHITECTURAL GUIDE (1991) p40. H Colvin A BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF BRITISH ARCHITECTS 1600-1840 (1995) p187.
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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