Listed Building

The only legal part of the listing 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.


Status: Designated


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Date Added
Local Authority
Argyll And Bute
Planning Authority
Argyll And Bute
NN 12150 7499
212150, 707499


Mid 18th century with later alterations. 2-storey with attic, 3-bay rectangular-plan coaching inn with late 20th century ground floor extension to entire NW (principal) elevation and long, low wing. Long, rectangular-plan former stable block with incorporated 3-bay single storey cottage adjoins hotel at SW. Render with some painted stone surrounds to windows. Inn; overhanging eaves with exposed rafters, narrow plain bargeboards to gable ends. Inn and cottage; gabled dormers with bargeboards.

NW (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: inn; centred door obscured by glazed extension at ground floor, 3 evenly spaced windows at 1st floor with dormers arranged above.

Cottage; advanced gabled single storey porch with central door, setback flanking ground floor windows with dormers arranged above. Former stable block; window to right of cottage, with modern brick and glazed porch with door to right return.

SW ELEVATION: advanced plain gable to former stable block with setback plain gable of inn above.

SE (REAR) ELEVATION: substantial modern flat roofed extension to ground floor of inn and cottage; various openings, plain wall to remaining part of former stable block. Central 1st floor stair window to inn with flanking windows, window to right smaller than that of left. 2 gabled dormer windows and central rooflight. Curved retaining wall set behind inn and stable block, with ground rising to SE.

NE ELEVATION: modern extension to ground floor with plain gable of inn above, date stone '1756' set under right eave of inn.

Modern timber doors. Predominantly 4-pane timber sash and case windows with horns, plate glass windows to modern extensions to inn, cottage and former stable block. Pitched grey slate roof to inn; rendered, coped gable apex stacks with raggles, circular clay cans. Pitched grey slate roof to stable block incorporating cottage.

Statement of Special Interest

It is reputed that there has been a hostelry on this site since 1460 however the present building dates back to the mid 18th century with later alterations. To the SE of the hotel there are fragmentary remains of a ruined chapel, founded in the mid 15th century by Duncan Campbell of Lochawe. Groome's Gazetteer records that next to the chapel was a holy well, which was frequented by pilgrims. With both buildings established during the mid 15th century the inn would have been built to provide shelter and accommodation for the pilgrims and travellers. To the NW of the hotel is the remains of an 82m stone pier built to Thomas Telford's design in 1812-1820 (RCAHMS), which possibly replaced a much smaller pier. Sometime during the early 17th century the chapel seems to have been abandoned, falling into disrepair and ruin. With the improvement of communications throughout Scotland in the 18th century the inn was rebuilt in 1756 as a coaching inn. A ferry service operated from Inveraray to St Catherines crossing Loch Fyne whereupon travellers would be able to continue the next part of their journey via roads leading to Kilmun, Lochgoilhead, Cairndow and Glencroe. This route was favoured by the Earls of Argyll as the most direct route to and from the Lowlands.

The inn's low wing may pre-date 1756 but this has not been established. The main building of the inn is similar in size and form to the mid 18th century coaching inn at nearby Cairndow (see separate listing), the only real difference being the roof. The roof of St Catherines with its overhanging eaves and bargeboards implies a19th century roof placed on an older building. Said to have suffered a fire in the 19th century, the inn may originally have had a steeper pitched roof, similar to that at Cairndow. This theory is further supported by evidence of raggles on the inner faces of the stacks which indicate remains of a steeper pitched roof. The rebuilding date of 1756 also ties in with the opening of a nearby quarry to the S of the inn. From 1751, stone quarried at St Catherines was the main source of ashlar for Inveraray Castle (see separate listing) with its distinctive light green hue. With up to fifty quarriers being employed, the inn would have been at the hub of all this activity. After this flurry of activity in the latter half of the 18th century the quarry was occasionally worked in the 19th century with no new workings after 1849 (RCAHMS). Latterly the inn has been run as a hotel, restaurant and public house and is seen by many as the focal point for the village and surrounding area. The car park to the NE of the hotel is thought to have been the paddock area where horses were grazed. The inn was unoccupied at the time fieldwork was undertaken, (2003).



T Carfrae, PLAN OF ST CATHERINES FEUING GROUND (1849). NAME BOOK No 55, p133 (1870-1874). C Stewart THE STATISTICAL ACCOUNT OF SCOTLAND, Vol 4, p564. J Ferguson, THE STATISTICAL ACCOUNT OF SCOTLAND, Vol 7 (1843) pp106-108. F Walker, THE BUILDINGS OF SCOTLAND, ARGYLL & BUTE (2000) p464. RCAHMS, INVENTORY OF MONUMENTS OF ARGYLL (1992) p42, pp199-200, 498.

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. 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: 19/09/2019 22:05