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.


Group Category Details
100000020 - See Notes
Date Added
Local Authority
Planning Authority
NT 26141 73636
326141, 673636


Dated 1576. Remodelled and extended 17th century onwards (see Notes). Interesting and historically complex collection of residential and commercial buildings to S and E sides of Tweedale Court with 16th century townhouse at its core and additions to N and W including Gibbsian doorpiece with Roman Doric porch. Rubble with mix of chamfered and moulded ashlar dressings.

FURTHER DESCRIPTION: PRINCIPAL (S) ELEVATION: 2-storey with attic and laigh floor, 3-bay, painted with doorpiece to centre. Steps at re-entrant angle leading to lower laigh floor level. 3-storey, 8-bay to rear with regular fenestration.

EXTENSION TO W (NOS 9 AND 11 FOUNTAIN CLOSE): 2 storey and attic, 4-bay with doorway at ground floor right and forestair leading through archway to 1st floor entrance at W gable end.

RANGE TO E SIDE OF TWEEDDALE COURT (NOS 5 AND 7): 3-storey and attic, 5-bay former industrial buildings now converted to residential. No 5 with shallow segmental-arched recess at 1st floor containing cast-iron winch with ornamental ironwork to spandrel. Door to E elevation with fanlight and unusual ogee-arched traceried ashlar detail above. To left, corbelling at ground floor corner-angle. Decorative wrought-iron entrance gates to Tweddale Court link No 5 to fragment of freestanding wall (see separate listing).

12-pane timber sash and case windows. Scottish slate. Broad harled stacks with clay cans. Cast-iron rainwater goods.

INTERIOR: 16th century section: barrel-vaulted entrance hall. Door to N wall with date 1576 with initials of Neil Laing and his wife Elizabeth Danielstoune, and inscription 'The Feir Of The Lord Preservith The Lyfe'. Arched buffet recesses to large hall behind. Chamber to E with aumbry containing painted guilloche design. Moulded doors and fireplaces. First floor (former High Dining Room) with plaster ceiling by James Nisbet 1782. Adam-style timber bookcases with pilasters added 1827. Pilastered doorpieces with block pediment and crenellated parapet. Further Neo-Classical detail in room to E. Sections of 1752 bellcast roof beneath pitched roof circa 1800. W extension circa 1791: two groin-vaulted rooms at ground floor. Flue and iron safety rails set within stoneflagged floor. Room to 1st floor with iron safe embedded within wall.

Statement of Special Interest

The former Tweeddale House is an interesting survival of a 16th century town house with a complex building history, having been adapted and extended throughout the centuries by a range of renowned architects. Its prominent Roman Doric doorpiece is unusual for a building of this type, providing interest and character. The building is noteworthy for a number of interesting interior details including a door inside the original N house wall dated 1576, the barrel-vaulted hall, painted aumbry and the groin-vaulted rooms within the former Linen Bank section to the West.

Probably built by Neil Laing, the Keeper of the Signet, the house takes its name from John 1st Marquess of Tweeddale to whom it was left in 1645 by his grandmother Lady Margaret Ker. There is evidence of an earlier stair-tower to the W elevation with a small yard enclosed by a screen wall to the S elevation. The 16th century house was probably converted to a double pile by extending to the N around 1600. The structure was recast in 1664 by the renowned Scottish architect, Sir William Bruce. Sold to the 2nd Earl of Tweeddale in 1670 who bought the adjacent tenement to the N and incorporated it into the building. Reconstructed again by John and Robert Adam in 1752-3 at which time the Gibbsian doorpiece was added. In 1782 the mason-architect John Hay rebuilt the N gable and E wall of the N wing in brick. It was the headquarters of the British Linen Bank from 1791-1807, at which time the Roman Doric porch was added and the building extended to the W (now Nos 9-11 Fountain Close). The house then passed to the Edinburgh printers, Oliver and Boyd who altered the interior to create larger workshops. The buildings currently remain in use, predominantly as a publishers (2008).

Part of B-Group with '14 High Street, Sedan Chair House' and 'Cowgate, Gateway at East of St Patricks Roman Catholic Church' (see Separate Listings) highlighting contextual interest.

List description and Statutory Address updated at resurvey (2007-08).



John Gifford et al, Buildings of Scotland - Edinburgh, (1991) p209-10. Charles McKean, Edinburgh ' An Illustrated Architectural Guide (1992) p28. Charles A Malcolm, 'The History of the British Linen Bank' (1950).

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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Printed: 09/02/2023 09:54