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

University of Edinburgh, Moray House, Paterson’s Land, 11-37 (Odd Numbers) Holyrood Road, EdinburghLB29090

Status: Designated


There are no additional online documents for this record.


Date Added
Last Date Amended
Local Authority
Planning Authority
NT 26438 73619
326438, 673619


Alan Robertson, 1913. 3-storey, symmetrical, 11-bay (to principal elevation), Classical, courtyard-plan, purpose-built teacher training centre with principal entrance elevation to S (Holyrood Road). Ashlar with raised channelled margins and coursed, bull-faced pink sandstone. Deep moulded base course, cornice above ground storey, eaves course, cornice, balustraded parapet.

FURTHER DESCRIPTION: entrance elevation to S: advanced outer 3-bays with further advanced central bays with channelled rustication to ground and paired engaged Ionic columns, rising to 1st and 2nd storeys. Segmental-arched pediments above. Central 3-bay round-arched arcade to ground floor leads to inner court. Mullioned and transomed windows above

N elevation with slightly advanced central gabled bay with projecting single storey flat-roofed entrance porch and Venetian window above. Advanced outer bays with central, segmental-headed dormers breaking eaves.

Courtyard elevations symmetrical. N range with central gable and flanking full-height tripartite canted bays surmounted by ogee bell-cast roofs.

Predominantly multi-pane timber sash and case windows. Grey slates.

INTERIOR: (seen 2007). Original room plan largely extant with some notable features. Large open-well staircase with decorative metal balusters, timber handrail and Composite-Order columns. Some classrooms with timber panelling. Large hall with central segmental-arched ceiling and timber panelling and flooring. Timber bookcases to former library. Timber and glass doors. Some decorative plasterwork.

Statement of Special Interest

A high quality well-detailed building in the Classical Edinburgh tradition, Paterson's Land is a large and striking building. It is a purpose-built teacher training centre which is little altered externally and retains some of its original internal features. The distinctive entrance elevation to the South with its arcaded entrance is a significant addition to the streetscape. The courtyard is notable for its Dutch-gabled section to the North elevation.

Moray House's history has its origins in the mid 19th century. Teacher training was formerly often in the hands of church schools where pupils with aptitude were taught how to be teachers in the evenings. During the 19th century, the government became more involved and the 1872 Education (Scotland) Act which made education compulsory for children from 5-13 meant that many more teachers were required. By 1905 teacher training became the sole responsibility of the government and to accommodate the increasing numbers of teachers required, this new building was constructed. It is now part of the University of Edinburgh (2007).

Alan Robertson (1881-1925) was Edinburgh based and was the architect for the then Scottish Education Department, which brought him the commission for this building.

List description revised as part of Edinburgh Holyrood Ward resurvey 2007-08.

Statutory address updated (2015). Previously listed as '11-37 (odd nos) Holyrood Road, University of Edinburgh, Moray House, Paterson's Land'.



Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland: CANMORE ID 121435

Ordnance Survey Map (1931-2).

John Gifford, Colin McWilliam and David Walker, The Buildings of Scotland, Edinburgh, 1984, p186.

Other information from University of Edinburgh website at (accessed 01-08-07).

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


Courtyard north range, University of Edinburgh, Moray House, Paterson’s Land, 11-37 (Odd Numbers) Holyrood Road, Edinburgh
Southeast elevation, University of Edinburgh, Moray House, Paterson’s Land, 11-37 (Odd Numbers) Holyrood Road, Edinburgh

Printed: 04/10/2023 03:11