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
Local Authority
East Lothian
Planning Authority
East Lothian
NT 42659 67712
342659, 667712


Earlier to mid 17th century. Early example of Scottish Laird's

house, evolved over several closely grouped phases of building, with 4 interlinked blocks. Cream sandstone formerly harled, with ashlar dressings; cement rendered repairs; chamfered arrises to

openings: cavetto eaves cornice. Main E-W block (2 phases) of 2-storey and attic form, with jamb at SW of 3 storeys and attic, and wing at E (running N-S) of 2 storeys with 2nd breaking eaves. Stone newel stairs. Horizontal stress, nestling in ground.

S Elevation: taller W jamb, 1-bay deep and 2 bays wide, with roll-moulded doorway on E return; irregularly grouped and varied windows; corbel course above doorway and 2nd floor level

corbelled; corbelled stair turret in re-entrant angle to E at 2nd

floor; steep crowstepped gables with gable head stacks to E and

W. Irregular windows to phases of E-W range apparent to S, with gabled dormerheads to 2nd floor windows, (as on 3rd floor windows of W

jamb); larger windows at 1st floor; further doorway to right with plain ashlar surround; broad wallhead stack with set-off. E wing: possibly built prior to E section of E-W range,linked later; 3 bays to E elevation, widely spaced, 2 bays wide and 2 bays on W return; stone forestair in re-entrant angle to W, under catslide roof, and steeply pitched pedimented dormerhead to 1st floor window flanking. Door at centre to E, windows in flanking bays at ground and to each bay at 1st floor, each with pedimented dormerheads (as above). Steeply pitched crowstepped gables to N and S, N gable intercepted at W by main N elevation of E-W range; SE angle corbelled above ground, to allow for pedestrian gateway through adjoining wall. N elevation: 2 building phases of E-W range apparent on N elevation adjoining N-S range at

E; each comprised of 3 widely spaced, almost regular bays, with further small windows to right bays; circular stair tower to left of

centre, breaking eaves and with small square windows; gabled dormerheads to 2nd floor windows. W elevation: 2 phases of building adjoined; 2 gabled bays to left of E-W range, intercepted by taller bay of W

jamb, partly corbelled above 1st floor. 3 large, later 1st floor windows. Small-pane glazing pattern to sash and case windows. Large grey slates. Sundial below eaves to S elevation at outer left, on W jamb. Dormerhead pediment on W elevation of E wing bearing date 1638 above entwined initials "IPMD" (much-weathered); dormerhead pediment above doorway on E elevation bearing later monogram of entwined initials. Interior: memel pine panelling of 18th century date; pine cornice to one bedroom. Fine cast-iron door fittings. Garden

walls: tall rubble sandstone walls, adjoined to house at NW and

SE; section of wall to SE contains 17th century gateway with moulded surround and square panel above, flanked by finials. Circular rubble parapet to well sited by house to S, with simple wrought-iron overthrow. Gatepiers: pair of late Renaissance-style, square ashlar gatepiers to SW of house; corniced with ball finials; curved, buttress-like sections adjoined to each pier by drive. Classical oval cast-iron relief panels set on each pier (4 in all), allegedly designed by Angelica Kauffman in mid 18th century and cast by Carron Iron Company.

Statement of Special Interest

Fountainhall bears strong resemblance to the contemporary Hamilton House, Prestonpans. The lands (originally known as Woodhead) fell to the Pringle family in the earlier 17th century, but were granted to the Lauder family later in the century who changed the name to

Fountainhall. A pair of iron jougs hang by the roll-moulded doorway in the W jamb, to S. The mansion provides a substantial example of the less defensive residences which spread across Scotland in the 17th century, the homes of the lairds. The dovecots lie to S in a ruinous state and with the steading to S, stable range and earlier cottages are listed separately.



RCAHMS Inventory No 137.

National Art Survey Drawings by James Gillespie 1899,held at NMRS. Country Life 2nd December 1954.

C McWilliam Lothian (1978),pp205-6.

Sir Thomas Dick Lauder Scottish Rivers (1890) pp309-11.

J Small Castles and Mansions of the Lothians (1883) vol 1.

MacGibbon and Ross Castellated and Domestic vol v.

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


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Printed: 03/10/2023 01:59