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

Whiting Bay Primary School, Whiting Bay, Isle of ArranLB52379

Status: Designated


Where documents include maps, the use of this data is subject to terms and conditions (


Date Added
Local Authority
North Ayrshire
NS 04648 26761
204648, 626761


Whiting Bay Primary School was designed by Baron Bercott and Associates in 1963-1967 and extended in 1978. It is situated on the east coast of Arran and overlooks the Firth of Clyde towards the mainland. The main entrance is to the rear. It is a single-storey Late Modern school building composed of a row of 3 pitched-roof classrooms interspersed with slightly advanced white triangular sections at ground level. These are linked by a flat-roofed corridor with narrow window openings, to a tall, monopitched-roof section to the north with low horizontal-glazing. The building is concrete rendered with timber boarding decoration at gables and below window openings and with orange coloured metal roof covering to the classrooms. At the south, a right-angled triangular section forms a play-shelter.

The flat-roofed extension to the southwest which contains the library and classroom dates to 1978.

There is a variety of window types, including plate-glass fixed, casement and bottom-opening windows.

The interior was seen in 2015 and the internal room arrangement largely remains as it was conceived in 1967 and 1978. There is a corridor to the rear with classroom entrances off this. The dining hall is situated at the north end of the building. Offices are situated between the classrooms and the dining hall. There is timber boarding to the corridor ceiling with regularly spaced skylights. The dining hall has timber boarding to the serving area and a high, narrow angled area immediately in front of this. The classrooms are irregularly shaped inside, reflecting their external diamond shape. Two of the classrooms have low sinks.

Statement of Special Interest

Whiting Bay Primary School dates from 1963 and is by the Glasgow architect firm of Baron Bercott and Associates. The distinctive triangular form of the classrooms is an unusual design feature, with no known precedent, and the overall geometric form of the building adds a playful element suiting its function as a primary school. The use of the triangle also echoes boat sails and is therefore a response to its coastal location. The variety of materials and colour demonstrate a considered approach to the design of the building and this is confirmed by the use of some design features both outside and inside the building. The building is situated on the main road in the village of Whiting Bay with the classrooms overlooking the Firth of Clyde to the east. It was built to replace an earlier school which had been on the same site and was officially opened on 5th June 1968.

After the Second World War, there was a general demand for new schools as a result of the rise in the population and the raising of the school leaving age to 15 in 1947. The designs of these schools were varied, as new materials allowed for more flexibility of space and new philosophies of education led to specific design features being incorporated. These included low windows to allow all the children to see out, small sinks for ease of use, and the ability for spaces to become more flexible as teaching in small groups was encouraged. Colour was often used to brighten internal and external spaces. Internal plan forms moved away from long internal corridors with classrooms off to those with central courtyards with surrounding classrooms, and open-plan rooms with movable screens which could provide spaces of differing sizes. By the 1960s, a variety of designs and plan forms were in use and there was no single preferable plan form in Scotland.

Baron Bercott studied at the University of Liverpool and moved to Glasgow in 1985. By 1964, he was practising as Baron Bercott and Associates, and there were 12 architects and technicians working in the practice. He was responsible for a number of other schools in the west of Scotland, some of which have been demolished. At the time of writing in April 2016, none of his other buildings are listed.



Canmore: CANMORE ID 292877

Printed Sources:

Close, R. (1992) Ayrshire & Arran. Edinburgh: Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland.

Close, R. and Riches, A., (2012) The Buildings of Scotland: Ayrshire and Arran. New Haven and London: Yale University Press.

Scotland: Building for the Future (2009) Edinburgh: Historic Scotland.

Scottish Education Department, (1954), School Building in Schools. 1 Primary Schools. Glasgow: HMSO

Online Sources:

Dictionary of Scottish Architects, Baron Bercott, (accessed 24/11/2015).

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.

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Whiting Bay Primary School, principal elevation looking east, taken from southeast during daytime with cloudy sky with road in front.
Whiting Bay Primary School, principal elevation looking east, taken from northeast during daytime with cloudy sky with road in front.

Printed: 25/07/2024 08:03