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

BLAIRS COLLEGE MENZIES HOUSELB19226

Status: Designated

Documents

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Summary

Category
B
Date Added
22/12/1992
Local Authority
Aberdeenshire
Planning Authority
Aberdeenshire
Parish
Maryculter
NGR
NJ 88324 847
Coordinates
388324, 800847

Description

Partially surviving later 18th century mansion, altered and extended by John Gall, architect, Aberdeen, under the supervision of John Menzies and Rev Gordon from 1827 when converted for use by the seminary; subsequently partially demolished. Extended to S, 1827, with Menzies' apartments and old chapel (see separate item); linked at N to later 1854 block.

ORIGINAL MANSION: 3-storey and attic (originally 3-storey); 5 bays only remain of original long symmetrical range, with full-height circular tower projecting at centre of N elevation: this tower now partially demolished, and forming eastern extremity of surviving building, the mirrorred eastern portion of the house to the left of the tower now demolished. Squared granite rubble, with black pinnings; 12-pane sash and case glazing to regularly placed windows, slated roof with 3 dormer windows in slope of roof to N (dormers of circa 1827 period of alterations), with 12-pane sash and case glazing; broad coped ashlar stacks. To rear (s) tall 4-storey gabled projecting wing at centre, once mirrored by similar wing to E (demolished), modern stair and perhaps site of original stair within.

INTERIOR: substantially re-cast, but retaining vaulted chambers of ?wine cellars at ground.

N (N-S ORIENTATED) BLOCK: 1854; 3-storey, 4-bay, wall-height slightly lower than earlier Menzies house block to S, tall 5-stage circular tower with conical slated roof projecting to left of E elevation, near re-entrant angle where this block meets Menzies House, and seen in 19th century sketch view (see NOTES); slated roof, end stacks; 12-pane sash and case glazing.

Statement of Special Interest

"Menzies house" was the original mansion house belonging to John Menzies of Pitfodels, given to the Catholic College in 1827, at which time the building was remodelled. A sketch view of the house as it existed in the later 19th century is reprinted in BLAIRS magazine of 1981, and a photograph of the eastern (demolished) part of the house in BLAIRS magazine for 1982. Modern ?inter-war housing has been built near to the site of the demolished eastern portion of the house (1992). Although altered and partially demolished, the house is listed at Category B because of its hirtorical importance as the earliest building on site, at the core of the later collegiate building complex. John Menzies of Pitfodels was a wealthy Catholic laird, formerly Convenor of the County of Aberdeen, when he made over his estate to Blairs to the Roman Catholic college; he is buried in he crypt of the chapel of St Margaret's Convent (Gillies College), Whitehouse Loan, Edinburgh. The college moved from Aquhorthies at Inverurie in 1829, to re-establish itself as "St Mary's College for education and training of those who may feel themselves called to dedicate themselves to God and the Salvation of souls as clergymen on the Scottish Mission".

References

Bibliography

ANNALS OF LOWER DEESIDE, John A Henderson, 1892. pp 184-195. THE INNES REVIEW, vol. XIV (2), P F Anson, "CATHOLIC CHURCH BUILDING IN SCOTLAND", 1963. UNDERGROUND CATHOLICISM IN SCOTLAND 1622-1878, P F Anson, 1970, pp 242, 247. BLAIRS, magazines, 1980, 1091, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1085, 1986. THIRD STATISTICAL ACCOUNT Kincardine volume: Maryculter, pp 236-237 (1988).

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 www.historicenvironment.scot/advice-and-support. You can contact us on 0131 668 8914 or at designations@hes.scot.

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Printed: 02/10/2022 08:30