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Easter Clune House, Including Cheese Press and Boundary Wall Incorporating Remains of Castle of Easter Clune

A Category B Listed Building in Birse, Aberdeenshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 57.0131 / 57°0'47"N

Longitude: -2.6401 / 2°38'24"W

OS Eastings: 361224

OS Northings: 791514

OS Grid: NO612915

Mapcode National: GBR WX.D8NX

Mapcode Global: WH8PX.FZ0J

Entry Name: Easter Clune House, Including Cheese Press and Boundary Wall Incorporating Remains of Castle of Easter Clune

Listing Date: 16 April 1971

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 334036

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB3055

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Birse

County: Aberdeenshire

Electoral Ward: Banchory and Mid Deeside

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire

Find accommodation in
Finzean

Description

Dated 1719; later alterations. Single storey and attic, 3-bay, rectangular-plan traditional early 18th century house with 20th century additions and alterations forming T-plan. Lime-harled granite rubble. Chamfered reveals, polished sandstone margins to addition. Rubble base course; dressed stone base course and projecting cills to addition; gableted windows breaking eaves.

S (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: symmetrical, with addition to left. Small-pane glazed timber door to centre of ground floor, surmounted by tooled panel reading "AI-MS 1719"; window to flanking bays to left and right; regular fenestration with raised dormerheads to attic floor. Single bay link to left, panelled timber door flanked by 2 10-pane windows, small dormer to attic. Gabled, advanced addition dated "1988" to outer left; granite cheesepress to centred at ground floor, 2 windows to ground floor, single window to left of attic floor, 2 single pane windows wet in gablehead; window regular fenestration to ground and attic floor of right return, tooled date stone reading "GH-JF 1988" set in gable of attic window, 2 small windows flanking to right.

E ELEVATION: gabled; 8-pane window off-centre to left of ground and attic floors.

N ELEVATION: symmetrical 3-bay, with later additions to right. Window to centre bay of ground floor, window to centre bay of attic floor. Single link bay adjoining to right, with 2 4-pane windows to ground floor, window centred above; gabled bay advanced to outer right, 2 windows to ground floor, window off-centre to left of attic floor, 2 single pane windows set in gablehead; single window to left return.

W ELEVATION: asymmetrical; 4-bay. Gableted porch advanced to left of ground floor, window off-centre to right, wall with gateway advanced to left, adjoining single storey garage to W; panelled timber door to right return, window to left return. Window flanking porch to left and 3 windows to right. 3 windows to left of attic floor, tooled panel with painted Lion Rampant to centre, blind panels to left and right.

Predominantly 6-pane and 12-pane timber sash and case windows. Purple-grey slate roof with tiled and stone ridges. Stone skews with simple skewputts. Cast-iron rainwater goods.

INTERIOR: not seen 1999.

CHEESE PRESS AND BOUNDARY WALL INCORPORATING REMAINS OF CASTLE OF EASTER CLUNE: granite cheese press to left of S wall of house. Boundary walls to SE of house, random granite rubble, with vertical section of castle wall.

Statement of Interest

Built by "AI" Alexander Irvine, who purchased the estate in 1713 from William Davidson of Balnacraig (see separate listing). It then passed into the ownership of the Farquharsons of Finzean in 1755. This traditional house, retaining much of its original detailing and character is a rare survival. The rybats of the door and windows, no longer visible, are made of sandstone from the Forest of Birse. The castle "a small ruin not one storey high" (Macgibbon and Ross, p458) of Easter Clune is said to have been built by Archbishop Ross, stone from which has probably been incorporated into the existing building. Callander notes that when the bishops lived in Easter Clune there was also a chapel nearby with a graveyard.

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