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 24972 74032
324972, 674032


James Hill, 1788-94. 3-storey, 4-bay classical former house and ground floor flat. Droved cream sandstone ashlar (painted black) with polished dressings. Smaller ground floor windows with cill course; eaves course. E bay slightly recessed with tripartite doorpiece with acanthus frieze and cornice; 2-leaf panelled doors (No 21). Roman Doric pilastered and corniced doorpiece (No 23) to centre of remaining bays, with panelled door; Orleans-Bourdon coat of arms above 1st floor window. Bipartite dormer to left.

Irregular coursed rubble gable formerly with 2 massive windows at 2nd floor, now much reduced in size.

3-bay rubble rear elevation; 2 right bays advanced and 3-storey, left bay 2-storey and basement with huge tripartite window at 2nd floor.

Timber sash and case windows; plate glass, 4-pane and 12-pane. Ashlar coped skews, stone stacks, rendered to W; grey slates.

INTERIOR: plain ground floor offices at No 23 with access to Hall of

No 21. No 21 with low square Hall divided by 19th century glazed timber screen; tiled floor, original cornice; large dog-leg stair ahead rises to 2nd floor; alternate decorative cast-iron banisters, mahogany handrail; full-width tripartite window to 1st landing and enormous similar tripartite window rising to ceiling at 2nd landing (both with considerable quantity of original glass). 1st floor landing with arches gives on to single bay room to SE with dado, plain chimneypiece and cornice; former 3-bay Drawing Room to W with panelled dado, shutters and doors, original ceiling rose and cornice, chimneypiece removed, pair of doors to inner wall with swagged frieze and cornices; large former Dining Room to NW (subdivided) with plaster panelled walls, panelled dado and shutters, similar overdoors, grey marble 19th century chimneypiece, and 2 large windows, E one with decorative etched glass to lower sash. At 2nd floor, apsidal-ended room to immediate S of stair with domed oval ceiling with original plaster enrichments (swags around rose) and plain moulded chimneypiece; short flight of steps to remainder of floor with 2 rooms to front with coved ceilings and plain chimneypieces; 2 full-height rooms to rear; further internal stair to attic.

Statement of Special Interest

James Hill was a mason who built the street with finance from Robert Belshes of Greenyeards. Owned by Lord Jeffrey from 1809-1850, and Professor James Lorimer from 1859-73. The grandsons of Louis Phillipe stayed here from 1859-60, thus the crest. It is one of the more interesting, and probably the grandest, house in the Rose Street/Thistle Street axes. Listed at Category A as a significant surviving part of the original fabric of Edinburgh?s New Town, one of the most important and best preserved examples of urban planning in Britain.



A J Youngson THE MAKING OF CLASSICAL EDINBURGH (1966) pp82. Gifford, McWilliam and Walker EDINBURGH (1988) pp329-330.

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.

Find out more about listing and our other designations at You can contact us on 0131 668 8914 or at


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Printed: 24/01/2022 04:37