Possibly 18th century. Near rectangular-plan walled garden (approximately 6,300m?) set on sloping site to SW of Kames House. Predominantly harl-pointed, coped rubble walls to outer elevations; red-brick inner lining.
The remains of the garden are impressive – its hillside setting and large expanse being particularly notable. Both the 1858 and 1981 Ordnance Survey maps show it as having been divided in 2 horizontally, just to the N of the centre point, with a central avenue and flanking beds in the upper section. The lower section is shown as having been planted with trees (probably an orchard). A greenhouse and red brick potting shed still stand to the N.
Single storey 3-bay ashlar house. Tudor hoodmould to each opening; moulded surrounds and stone mullions and transoms; quoin strips.
The building was built to be the school for the daughters of the heads of each department on the Blackadder estate. The NE section of the building was the school teacher’s quarters. The single storey section to SE was the school room itself. In 1915 the building suffered from a severe fire and it remained a ruin until 1924, when it was rebuilt. It was at this time that the stack to outer right, SE elevation, was elongated; the carved ribbon now found to the porch (NE elevation) was formerly on the chimney breast. Other more substantial alterations were made to the building. The cans were formerly all candy-twisted and now some of these can be seen in the garden (one being recently made into a pedestal for a sundial). There was also a bellcote to the gable head to SW elevation, where now there is a weathervane. It served, after the renovation work in 1924, as a fishing lodge and since then has remained residential.
Over the past 3 years we have had the privilege of working extensively on Ayton Castle and the surrounding estate including the complete restoration of Dovecot, Extensive stone repair, lime repointing and stone replacement to main buildings and estate walls.
James Gillespie Graham, 1845-51; drawing room extended, billiard room added, and family wing extended by David Bryce, 1860-61; family wing raised, smoking room added, and dining room, billiard room, kitchen wing and stable yard extended by James Maitland Wardrop, 1864-7; extensive redecoration by Bonnar & Carfrae, 1873-5. Asymmetrical, 2-, 3- and 4-storey with attic, 15-bay (at ground), irregular-plan Scots Baronial house comprising 3-storey entrance block at centre; 4-storey with attic, near square-plan ‘great tower’ recessed to right; 2-storey, L-plan range to outer right; 2-storey, near rectangular-plan range recessed to left of centre; single storey former coach house projecting to left; 2-storey with basement, rectangular-plan range adjoined to outer left with screen walls obscuring lower service wings to front. Squared and snecked tooled red sandstone; sandstone ashlar dressings. Base course; corbelled eaves (rope-moulded corbelling to turrets); crenellated parapets; crowstepped gables. Stugged quoins; stugged long and short surrounds to chamfered and roll-moulded openings; stop-chamfered sandstone mullions; moulded cills.
B Group comprises ‘Ayton Castle’, ‘Ayton Castle, Dovecot’, ‘Ayton Castle, North Lodge’, ‘Ayton Castle, South Lodge’, ‘Ayton Castle, Stable Courtyard’ and ‘Ayton Castle, Walled Garden’ – see separate list entries. Commissioned by William Mitchell Innes, Governor of the Bank of Scotland, to replace an earlier house, itself destroyed by fire in 1834. Clearly inspired by his work at Brodick Castle in 1844 and undoubtedly influenced by the publication of R W Billings’ BARONIAL AND ECCLESIASTICAL ANTIQUITIES OF SCOTLAND in 1845, Ayton Castle remains Gillespie Graham’s largest and most thoroughly Baronial house – noted in the OS Name Book as being “…very irregular and not in accordance with any defined order of architecture.” Prominently set on a hillside above the Eye Water, both its detailing and dramatic massing remain much as they did when first complete. With subsequent work by Bryce and Maitland Wardrop (himself architect of the nearby Ayton Parish Church – see separate list entry), and interior schemes by Scotland’s then leading houses decorators – Bonnar & Carfrae, not only is this the most significant building in the parish, but also, one of the most significant within the country as a whole.
Starting in 2013 the restoration of Press Castle’s walled garden has covered several phases of design, build and reconstruction all in lime mortar.
Earlier to mid 19th century with later additions and alterations. Near rectangular-plan walled garden to S of Press Castle. Tall rubble sandstone walls, red sandstone dressings; some red brick surrounds to openings. Tooled sandstone quoins to engaged, rectangular piers to NE and NW corners (sandstone urn surmounting NW pier with pointed-arched traceried fragment surmounting wall to side). Sundial set within comprising octagonal-plan, panelled shaft beneath square block; weathered inscriptions.
B Group comprises ‘Press Castle’, ‘Press Castle, Dovecot’, ‘Press Castle, Gate Lodge’ and ‘Press Castle, Walled Garden’ – see separate list entries. Although little remains of its original formal layout (as shown on the 1st OS map), this large walled garden remains a significant part of the Press Castle estate. A sketch published in Thomson’s book shows lean-to greenhouses originally adjoined the inner elevation of the N wall.
Late 19th century. 2-storey and attic 3-bay double-fronted shop with buildings to both sides; Coursed cream ashlar, polished at ground, stugged to 1st floor; polished dressings. Base course; alternate buckle quoins; stop-roll-moulded arrises at ground; raised margins at 1st floor, ashlar coped skews; corniced ashlar stacks.
Multiple phases of restoration including lime repointing, chemical treatment and stone repair.
A rectangular-plan parish church of composite Norman and First Pointed Gothic style. It incorporates fabric dating from the 11th century onwards including fabric from the 13th century cruciform-plan priory on the site. The building was extensively remodeled in 1662 with further work in 1851-55. A former hearse house, built around 1850, is located at the west entrance to the graveyard. The church is surrounded by an irregular-plan graveyard.
The Priory Church is built in coursed pink and red sandstone. Each corner has a full-height square-plan tower with a pyramidal cap. Full-height and plain pilasters divide each bay of the east, north and west elevations. The bays have round-arched, blind arcading with chevrons and engaged colonnettes and there are pointed-arch lancet windows above. The south elevation has a gabled entrance porch, a pointed-arch bellcote and an engaged stair tower in the re-entrant angle to the right.
Designed by the Edinburgh-based Cairns, Ford & Yuill (also responsible for the nearby Ladykirk House) the new Charterhall retains much of its original detailing, remaining a good example of its unusual, later 20th century Arts and Crafts type – such a late survival of the style being of particular interest. An irregular-plan walled garden (containing a balustered sundial and tennis court) is set to the SW of the house.
Berwick-upon-Tweed Social and Labour Club) Ashlar, quoins, 3 storeys. Centre flush-panelled door and plain fanlight in doorcase of Ionic half-colums with frieze and dentilled cornice.
Netherbyres House, Walled Garden’ – see separate list entries. A fine and extremely rare example of a mathematically laid out elliptical garden, possibly inspired by J Worlidge’s ART OF GARDENING (1682), in which a circular garden is described as “…very pleasant…The walls about such a Garden are very good for fruit, the Wind being not so severe against a Round, as against a streight Wall.” The ellipse at Netherbyres was probably designed by William Crow – a mathematician with a keen interest in horticulture, who inherited Netherbyres from his father in 1706, and returned from Edinburgh in 1720 to manage his estate. In a letter, dated 1740, to Dr Alstone (then Professor of Botany at Edinburgh University), Crow described his garden and in particular, his peaches, of which he had “… a wall 300ft long.” This peach wall is thought to have formed part of his elliptical layout.