Listed Building

The legal part of the listing is the address/name of site only. All other information in the record is not statutory.


Status: Designated


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Date Added
Local Authority
Planning Authority
NT 24257 73415
324257, 673415


Robert Brown, designed circa 1813 - 1822, executed by John Lessels 1866-73 (see Notes). Extensive classical terrace, comprising unified façade of 2-storey attic and basement townhouses with main-door and common stair flats behind; with segmental arched dormers. Basement area to street including some vaulted cellars and retaining walls. Sandstone ashlar, droved ashlar to basement, channelled ashlar at ground floor. Entrance platts oversailing basement. Banded base course; banded cill course and string course at 1st floor; corniced eaves course; blocking course. Balustraded parapet to terminal houses. Round-arched door surrounds with plain fanlights. Moulded architraved windows at 1st floor. Lead-roofed segmental arched dormers at attic; later slate hung boxdormers to Nos. 14 and 20. Cast-iron balconies on scrolled brackets at 1st floor windows

N (END) ELEVATION: rendered with sandstone ashlar dressings, including ashlar quoins to left. Banded cill course at 1st floor; corniced eaves course. 2 storey corniced canted bay to left. Slightly Recessed centre bay with bipartite ground floor window; corniced window at 1st floor, small attic window above.

REAR ELEVATION: coursed squared rubble with ashlar cills lintels and rybats; some ashlar quoins. Roughly regular fenestration.

Predominantly plate glass in timber sash and case windows. Double pitch M-section roof; sandstone skews, grey slates. Corniced ashlar wall-head and ridge stacks with modern clay cans. Cast-iron railings on sandstone coping stone edging basement recess to street. Cast iron rainwater goods.

INTERIOR: interiors typified by plain classical detailing. Some cornicing, with mainly floreate designs. Fire surrounds with broken pediments. Some oval internal rooms with detailed plasterwork door surrounds and cornicing.

Statement of Special Interest

Manor Place is a well-proportioned and detailed classical terrace, forming an important component of the Walker Estate and the Western New Town. The townhouses are a largely well-preserved example of the urban planning of Robert Brown for the former Walker estate. The area was feued very slowly and so the terrace was eventually built between 1866 and 1873 by John Lessels. In this part of the street Lessels broadly retained the original Brown design in contrast to the more northerly parts where he adapted the design. This leads to a gradual transition away from the Brown design the further N the street goes. The northernmost part of Manor Place (see separate listing) was not completed until 1892 and demonstrates a different approach to the design of the classical terrace from Brown's with pedimented triple first floor windows being most characteristic.

Robert Brown was an experienced architect, and by the time he was involved with the deigns for the Walker Estate he had already designed several other urban schemes, including between 1810 and 1830 laying out streets in Portobello on land belonging to the Marques of Abercorn. His other notable works include Newington and St. Leonard's church (now The Queen's Hall) and the rearrangement of the interiors for Yester House on behalf of the Marques of Tweeddale. Robert Brown worked on a number of smaller projects in the New Town but the cohesive planning of the Walker estate is amongst one of the best examples of his work. He was especially competent in the design of corner pavilions and parades of shops, as can be seen in his work at North West Circus Place (see separate listing).

John Lessels (1809 - 1883) was engaged in a number of urban design schemes throughout his career, and took over responsibility for the Walker Estate relatively early in his career. He often worked to designs originally by Robert Brown adapting them to suit changing taste as he went. He later went on to work for the City Improvement Trust in Edinburgh, and gained a wide experience of residential design with further designs in both the old and new towns of Edinburgh as well as some large commissions such as significant alterations to George Watson's Hospital

(List description revised 2009 as part of re-survey.)



Ordnance Survey, Large Scale Town Plan, (1849-53); J Gifford, C McWilliam, D M Walker, The Buildings of Scotland: Edinburgh (1988) p. 375; Youngson, The Making of Classical Edinburgh, (1988) p. 216; West End Community Trust, Edinburgh's West End, A Short History, (1984).

About Listed Buildings

Listing is the way that a building or structure of special architectural or historic interest is recognised by law through the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997.

We list buildings of special architectural or historic interest using the criteria published in the Historic Environment Scotland Policy Statement.

The statutory listing address is the legal part of the listing. The information in the listed building record gives an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building(s). It is not a definitive historical account or a complete description of the building(s). The format of the listed building record has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

Listing covers both the exterior and the interior. Listing can cover structures not mentioned which are part of the curtilage of the building, such as boundary walls, gates, gatepiers, ancillary buildings etc. The planning authority is responsible for advising on what is covered by the listing including the curtilage of a listed building. For information about curtilage see Since 1 October 2015 we have been able to exclude items from a listing. 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 Historic Environment Scotland Act 2014. 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 current legislation.

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Printed: 21/11/2018 21:03