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
NT 09125 87451
309125, 687451


Archibald Elliot, 1805-11 with alterations. 3-storey and basement; 7-bay; L-shaped former guildhall. Symmetrical classical design with rusticated basement, V-jointed ground floor, pedimented entrance bay to principal (N) elevation and 4-tier steeple. Droved sandstone ashlar with polished ashlar dressings. Band courses above and below ground floor, at cill level to 1st floor and just below cill level to 2nd floor; moulded eaves band. Architraved windows with cornices to 1st floor.

N (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: projecting entrance bay to centre; flanking pilasters terminate at Doric entablature surmounted by mutuled pediment above 1st floor; base of steeple above. Recessed central entrance with 2-leaf panelled timber door and rectangular fanlight; narrow flanking windows. Round-arched window with narrow round-arched flanking windows above. Regular fenestration to 3 bays to either side. Ground floor windows enlarged late 20th century to fill round-arched outer surrounds; central one to each side altered to entrance with round-arched fanlight and 2-leaf panelled timber door.

STEEPLE: rises above projecting pedimented entrance bay to centre of N elevation. Base with moulded cornice at eaves level. Square-plan lower stage with pilastered corners surmounted by urn-like finials; round-arched window to each side; moulded cornice. Square-plan 2nd stage with chamfered sides, base course, band course and moulded cornice; clock face with carved wreath-like hood-mould to each side. Circular-plan 3rd stage with base course and projecting entablature supported on 8 Ionic columns; basket-arched louvred window to alternate spaces (in line with sides of lower stages). Octagonal spire at apex with 3 band courses.

W (GUILDHALL STREET) ELEVATION: 7 bays. Round-arched Arcaded walkway to 5 bays to right of ground floor; access via steps set back to basement to that to left; entrance with narrow window to right set back to outer right; plain timber door; round-arched window to 3 bays to left. Blind round-arched panels to 2 bays to left of ground floor. Segmental-headed vennel entrance to 2nd bay from right to basement; double cast-iron gate with decorative finials. Round-arched louvred vent to right. Round-arched entrance with plain timber door to left; round-arched window to left. Pair of blind round-arched bays to outer left of basement. Regular fenestration to upper floors; one window to outer left of 1st floor and 2 windows to outer left of 2nd floor blocked.

6 and 12-pane timber sash and case windows to upper storeys; fixed multi-pane timber frames (and sashes) to ground floor. Grey slate piended roof. Stacks not visible.

INTERIOR: destroyed by fire in late 20th century and largely modernised. Half-turn staircase with decorative cast-iron balustrade to entrance hall.

Statement of Special Interest

An important early 19th century public building incorporating superimposition of classical orders/detailing. The tiered steeple is a local landmark. Although built as a guildhall and linen exchange, it has undergone various changes of use. Already by 1816/17 it had become the Spire Inn. It was converted to use as County Buildings (including the Sheriff's Court) in 1849-50 and acquired its present (1998) function as a job centre in 1993. Archibald Elliot was a prominent Edinburgh architect (with offices in London) in the early 19th century. He designed two of Edinburg''s most important Greek Revival buildings, Regent Bridge and County Hall.



appears on J Wood's PLAN OF THE TOWN OF DUNFERMLINE (1823); John Gifford, FIFE, in the 'Buildings of Scotland' series (1988) p189l; H Colvin, A BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF BRITISH ARCHITECTS 1660-1840, Third Edition (1995) p339; RCAHMS, TOLBOOTHS AND TOWN HOUSES (1996), p205, 218; Bert McEwan, DUNFERMLINE - OUR HERITAGE (1998) pp97-98.

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.

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