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
Supplementary Information Updated
Local Authority
Planning Authority
NT 23739 74020
323739, 674020


David Cousin, laid out 1845, later extensions 1871, 1877 (executed by James Jerdan and Son, 1909). Extensive cemetery with later extension to N of Ravelston Terrace. Various entrances, with gate lodges, to the E (Dean Path) and S (Belford Road). (See separate listing for former gate lodge to Queensferry Road.) Coursed random rubble boundary walls with ashlar copes; incorporating fabric from former Dean House to S wall. Cast-iron railings and gates. Lower terrace to SE built into steep banks above Water of Leith. Twin hemicycle entrance gateways to Dean Path with gatelodge to left (S); further entrance gateway to Queensferry Road. Extensive range of outstanding sculptural monuments dating 1845 ' present.

E (DEAN PATH) ENTRANCE GATEWAYS: twin hemicycle entrances (N entrance part of 1871 extension). Corniced square piers, sandstone ashlar with rock faced bands; surmounted by ashlar pyramid finials set on ball feet. Cast-iron railings, large cast-iron gates to centre.

N (QUEENSFERRY ROAD) ENTRANCE: James Jerdan and Son, 1909-10. Walls and gates in renaissance style; single storey lodge, coursed squared sandstone with some ashlar quoins. Bowed windows and central stack.

GATE LODGE: L-plan Tudor gabled gate lodge forming part of retaining wall to SE at Dean Path entrance. Coursed squared sandstone with some sandstone ashlar quioins. Prominent gable end and decorative fretted barge-boarding.

Statement of Special Interest

A-Group with 69 Dean Path which is a former gate lodge to the Dean Cemetery and Belford Road gate lodge (see separate listings). The Dean Cemetery, with Warriston Cemetery (see separate listing) is Edinburgh's most significant Victorian burial grounds containing some outstanding examples of memorial architecture and sculpture to prominent figures such as William Henry Playfair and Lord Cockburn. The cemetery is the closest example in Edinburgh to the Fir Park Necropolis in Glasgow, although it is richer in sculptural rather than architectural monument. Amongst the most significant is the memorial to Glasgow Magnate James Buchannan, which takes the form of Playfair's choragic monument to Dugald Stewart from Calton Hill, and was designed by William Brodie. The west wall contains a number of monuments to particularly significant men, including Lord Cockburn, Lord Rutherford, Playfair, and Lord Jeffery. The northern extension of 1871 also contains some significant monuments including a large plain obelisk erected to John Russell, editor of the Scotsman. Other monuments contain work by J S Rhind, Sir George Reid and Sir John Steell.

The cemetery was developed in three phases. The first, in 1845, was the most southerly, laid out by David Cousin. The 1871 extension to the N mirrored the original design with large bowed entrance and central avenue. A further addition was planned in 1877 to the N of Ravelston Terrace, but this was not executed until 1909, when it was completed by James Jerdan and Son. The cemetery stands on the site of the former Dean House (1614) which was owned by Lord Provost of Edinburgh Sir William Nisbet. Alexander Nisbet is said to have written Systems of Heraldry in Dean House. The house was demolished in 1845 to make way for the cemetery, with some of the stones incorporated into the boundary walls.

David Cousin was one of the most outstanding architects of his generation, combining private practice with significant civic work, including his role as Superintendant of works to the City of Edinburgh. He won the commission for the Dean Cemetery through a competition. In the early 1840s he had become a specialist in the layout of cemeteries, predominantly in the Gothic style. This makes his predominantly classical design for the Dean Cemetery more unusual. His choice of the classical style may be linked to his change in religious affiliations during the disruption where he joined the newly formed Free Church, for whom he prepared standard Italianate round-arched church designs which could be built quickly and cheaply. Cousin was also the architect for Warriston cemetery (see separate listing).

Category changed from B to A as part of resurvey (2009).



Ordnance Survey, Large Scale Town Plan (1893-4); J Gifford, C McWilliam, D M Walker, The Buildings of Scotland: Edinburgh (1988) p. 398; (accessed 17/9/2008).

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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