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
Orkney Islands
Planning Authority
Orkney Islands
Cross And Burness
HY 75886 55271
375886, 1055271


Mid to later 19th century with later alterations and additions. Single storey, 4-bay rectangular-plan cottage adjoining single bay barn to right (NE) with single storey byre range at right angles forming L-plan; 1 1/2 storey square-plan kiln to angle. Single storey, 3-bay cottage adjoining further single storey barn/byre to S, forming separate range to W of main L-plan complex. Squared rubble.

MAIN, L-PLAN RANGE: SE (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: 2 boarded door to central bays; window in each bay to outer left and right. Doorway, offset to left, to barn adjoining to right. Large square-headed opening to terminal gable of short arm of L to right; large square-headed opening to lean-to addition to left. Blank SW elevation of short arm; centred window to lean-to to outer right. REAR (NW AND NE) ELEVATIONS: NW ELEVATION: window in each bay to cottage to outer right. Boarded door with boarded window flanking to barn to centre. Blank lean-to projecting from kiln to outer left. NE ELEVATION: blank gabled wall to kiln to outer right. Lean-to projection from centre with doorway to right return; large, square-headed doorway to right. Boarded door to left.

DETACHED S RANGE: E (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: 3-bay cottage to outer right with doorway and 2 flanking windows. Lower, single bay barn/byre to centre with doorway, offset to left. Single bay barn/byre to outer right with centred doorway. W (REAR) ELEVATION: blank. S (SIDE) ELEVATION: centred doorway; paired dovecote entrances to gablehead with projecting alighting cills.

Fixed timber-framed windows to main cottage. Predominantly traditional overseamed flagstone roofs with extensive cement mortaring to main cottage; some turf overlay; harled, corniced gablehead and ridge stacks to main cottage.

INTERIORS: not seen, 1998.

Statement of Special Interest

From records showing the apportionment of communal sheep on the island, Nether Linnay's allocation can be seen to be high, at 50 sheep. Only a few other crofts, including Kirbest, Westness, Peckhole and Hooking have been allocated higher numbers. As with Gateside, (see separate list description), the 1 1/2 storey square-plan kiln indicates the possibility of Nether Linnay being a result of the 1830s agricultural reforms undertaken by the factor, Robert Scarth, who might also have imposed his ideas about farm layouts. The relative grandeur of the tall kiln and its position at the angle of the range, instead of within one of the traditional pairs of parallel ranges of farm buildings, might have been influenced by the arrangement of 'high' farm buildings, like Braebuster, on the mainland. Appears on 1st edition OS map as a Post Office. Nether Linnay remains relatively intact in form and continues to display the traditional type of Orkney flagstone roofing.



Appears on 1st edition OS map (1882); P A Tulloch, A WINDOW ON NORTH RONALDSAY, (1974), p 98; A Fenton, THE NORTHERN ISLES: ORKNEY AND SHETLAND (1978), pp 470, 474.

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: 14/08/2022 04:17