Listed Building

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

ALASTREAN HOUSE INCLUDING SUNDIALLB49157

Status: Designated

Documents

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Summary

Category
B
Date Added
25/03/1980
Last Date Amended
25/03/2003
Local Authority
Aberdeenshire
Planning Authority
Aberdeenshire
Parish
Tarland
NGR
NJ 49066 4788
Coordinates
349066, 804788

Description

A G Sydney Mitchell, 1903 with modern additions. 2-storey, 5-bay hip-roofed central block with 3-bay gabled wings, U-plan, 17th century, Baroque Revival style former hunting lodge. Drum towers with candle-snuffer roofs flanking main entrance. Aberdeen bond pink granite. Moulded eaves course. Rectangular windows.

North (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: 5-bay central block with single storey, advanced gabled porch to centre in rusticated granite. 2-leaf timber door flanked by blocked pilasters supporting polished granite plaque inscribed, 'COMRADES OF ALL THE BRAVE THE FAITHFULL AND THE TRUE AND IN GLORIOUS MEMORY OF THE FEW.' Gablehead roughly carved with RAF arms and inscription, 'ALASTREAN HOUSE, IN MEMORY OF MY SONS SIR ALASTAIR, SIR RODERIC SIR IAIN MACROBERT'. Windows flanking entrance piece. Engaged 2-stage, drum towers flanking porch terminating in candle-snuffer roofs breaking eaves. Plain regular fenestration to outer bays. 3-bay advanced gabled wings flanking main block to form front courtyard. Modern 4-bay blocks, built in sympathetic style, abutting outer corners of wings.

South (REAR) ELEVATION: 9-bay, regular fenestration. Triple central bay with plaques bearing the arms of Lord Aberdeen carved to upper storey, flanked by engaged drum towers. Plain outer bays flanked by additional engaged drum towers to corners. 2-storey, rectangular-plan irregular advanced wing to outer right with timber forestair linking garden to billiard room.

East (SIDE) ELEVATION: obscured by modern additions in similar style.

West (SIDE) ELEVATION: irregular fenestration with advanced single storey, bipartite window to centre, large modern U-plan additions (2001-2) in similar style abutting to outer left (northwest).

Multi-pane upper case, plate glass lower, timber frame sash and case windows. Grey slates, lead flashing, solar panels to S facing roof. Hipped roof with coped ridge stacks.

INTERIOR: plain but elegant 1960s timber panelling and plasterwork throughout following 1958 fire. Except billiard room in south wing which retains original Jacobethan style panelling with ornate pilasters and strapwork carving over fireplace.

SUNDIAL: freestanding narrow Salomonic column on plinth, blocked at centre, terminating in plain capital bearing bronze dial.

Statement of Special Interest

Originally named Cromar House, the house was built as an autumn shooting lodge for the Marquis of Aberdeen. As Lady Aberdeen wrote in their reminiscences,"At last we found the site for the new house at Cromar. A. has been looking for one for 30 years and now we discovered the perfect place,our Highland retreat in a fashion after our own hearts, with terraces and grass walks, and an Italian garden in the midst of that wonderful panorama of hills.There among the delectable mountains we have settled down". The Cromar estate was sold in 1905 to settle the Marquis and Marchioness' bills, largely run up through their public service work, and purchased by India cotton baron Sir Alexander MacRobert. Rachel Workman, Lady MacRobert later renamed the house Alastrean in memory of her sons (Alastair, Roderic and Iain) who died serving in the RAF in World War II. Lady MacRobert dedicated the house to the RAF in 1943 as a retirement home, forming part of the McRobert Estates Trust. Alastrean House was delisted due to extensive fire damage in 1958. However, as the interior has been sensitively restored and the characteristic main stone structure was undamaged it was listed at category B in 2003.

Listed building record updated in 2014.

References

Bibliography

Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland: http://www.rcahms.gov.uk/canmore.html CANMORE ID 136642.

Geddes, J. (2001) Deeside and the Mearns, an Illustrated Architectural Guide. Edinburgh: RIAS. p 137.

Hamilton-Gordon, J. C. Marquis of Aberdeen (1925) We twa, Reminiscences of Lord and Lady Aberdeen. London: W. Collins Sons & Co.

Further information courtesy of Buildings of Scotland Research Unit (2014).

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.

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Printed: 21/11/2018 21:01