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 24125 73804
324125, 673804


A G Sydney Mitchell, 1883; reconstruction of 1876 terraced house; later alterations forming access to some rooms formerly part of No. 2 Rothesay Terrace (see separate listing). 4-storey, 4-bay asymmetrical townhouse over basement and attic. 2-storey canted bay to right (E), 2-storey rectangular bay to left (W); pedimented porch; distinctive multipane glazing. Entrance platt oversailing basement. Sandstone ashlar, channelled to either side of porch. Banded base course. Moulded band course at 1st floor. Moulded string course at 3rd floor; corniced eaves course. Architraved windows, corniced cills. Pilastered and pedimented timber porch to centre with relief carving in classical style. Pedimented window centred above at 1st floor. 2-storey canted (to right) and square (to left) bays. Tripartite (right) and bipartite (left) mullioned windows at 2nd floor with scrolled aprons. Windows with bracketed cills at 3rd floor (bipartite to far) left. 3 rectangular bipartite dormers at attic. Cast-iron balconies, with bombed profile above entrance and advanced bays.

REAR (N) ELEVATION: 6 storeys, roughly 3 bays, slightly advanced. Regular squared coursed rubble with ashlar quoin stones, cills, lintels and rybats. Regular fenestration, with 6-storey canted bay at right. Tripartite windows at 1st 2nd and 3rd floors with similar mulitpane glazing to front (S) elevation.

Elaborate mulitpane glazing pattern in timber sash and case windows. 18 and 15-pane glazing at upper floors. Steep double pitch M-section roof; grey slates. Corniced ashlar gable end stacks (that to E replacement) with modern clay cans. Cast-iron railings on ashlar cope edging basement recess to street. Cast-iron rainwater goods set behind cornice and band courses.

INTERIOR: lavish Franco-Italianate interior, now converted for use as a hotel (2008). Large walnut panelled entrance hall including broad square staircase with marble treads. Gryphon craved newel posts with armorial shields. Large scroll pedimented chimneypiece of red and white marble. Dining room to rear with further panelling and two stage marble chimneypiece and timber beamed ceiling. Large drawing room to rear at 1st floor with bay window. Timber panelling and large alabaster and coloured stone fireplace by Farmer and Brindley. Deep cornice with figurative decoration. Panelled ceiling with murals depicting astrological and pastoral scenes. Library to front left of plan at 1st floor with integrated corniced bookcases and detailed timber panelling with relief carvings of putti. Some cornicing at 2nd and 3rd floor rooms and cylindrical rooflights at 3rd floor corridors.

Statement of Special Interest

A one off townhouse designed by Sydney Mitchell for J R Findlay Watherston the editor of the Scotsman newspaper. The design is a mannerist interpretation of the rigid classicism of the surrounding terraces. The two bays (one canted, one rectangular) are asymmetrical, as is the placement of the tripartite and bipartite windows on the upper floors. The classical detailing is deliberate and refers to the surrounding buildings. The highly detailed and intricately carved porch is also a good survival and provides evidence of the high quality craftsmanship found both inside and outside the house.

Number 3 Rothesay Terrace was owned by J R Findlay (editor of the Scotsman) and used as his entertaining space. Living space for him and his family remained in No. 2 until it was later sold. The side windows of the bay to the rear of No. 2 were blocked at this point so that the new owner would not overlook the terrace of No.3 which Findlay still owned. The rear of the house looks out over the Dean Village and Well Court. Well Court (see separate listing) was also designed by Mitchell for Findlay and was the centrepiece of Watherston's social housing scheme for the Dean Village.

In the 1930s the building served as residence for Queen Margret College 'Domestic Science Institute' before being passed to the National Health Service as a Conference Centre in the 1960s.

Arthur George Sydney Mitchell was an important Scottish architect of the later 19th century. The work for Well Court and 3 Rothesay Terrace were amongst the earliest of his commissions in independent practice and some of the best examples of his major residential works. Mitchell met Findlay through his father who was an eminent public figure. Shortly afterwards (again possibly through the influence of his father) Mitchell was appointed the architect to the Commercial Bank of Scotland. Later, after taking on George Wilson as a partner the practice also became architects to the Board for Scotland. Mitchell was an excellent designer, equally comfortable with public and private works and a master at combining various architectural styles.

Later alterations have incorporated some rooms which were formerly part of No. 2 Rothesay Terrace (see separate listing) into the interior of No. 3.

(Category changed from B to A and list description revised 2009 as part of re-survey.)



Ordnance Survey, Large Scale Town Plan, (1893-94); J Gifford, C McWilliam, D M Walker, The Buildings of Scotland: Edinburgh (1988) p. 378; The Building News (1.8.1884); Sydney Mitchell and Wilson Collection, NMRS, EDD 635/1.

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: 02/06/2023 20:53