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Dunecht House

A Category A Listed Building in Echt, Aberdeenshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 57.1608 / 57°9'38"N

Longitude: -2.4136 / 2°24'48"W

OS Eastings: 375083

OS Northings: 807846

OS Grid: NJ750078

Mapcode National: GBR X6.LRYF

Mapcode Global: WH8PF.W8VS

Entry Name: Dunecht House

Listing Date: 16 April 1971

Category: A

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 334129

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB3133

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Echt

County: Aberdeenshire

Electoral Ward: Westhill and District

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire

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Dunecht

Description

Mansion round courtyard with outer court to N., and S.
terraced garden. Originally John Smith 1820 Neo-Greek
2-storey basement and attic square block with Greek-doric
porch and bow, both features now removed. Incorporated at
S.E. corner of large 2-storey and basement Italianate
mansion, William Smith 1859 (south side of present court),
2-storey coursed granite with bay windows and top parapet,
balustraded at bays, handsome 4-storey tower. Porte-cochere
at E. end removed, alterations and additions to E end
of Smith house, library, new courtyard entrance tower
containing staircase, and chapel added to form court George
Edmund Street 1877, French-Italian Romanesque. New dining
room, conservatory, and other additions, new windows to
court in Smith building G. Bennet Mitchell 1900.
Conservatory removed, extensive additions comprising
boilerhouse wing, gates and lodges N.W. and N.E. terraces
loggia gazebo etc. interior alterations and additions Sir
Aston Webb 1913-20. Bennet Mitchell's dining room removed,
internal alterations and Webb's diagonal screen wall to
court removed, Dunecht estate office 1950s.
Interior:- Smith staircase large square toplit and round-arched,
cove and panels painted in Raphaelesque manner by Italian
artists c. 1860 with additions 1900; Long gallery (W.
Smith) 100' x 16' compartmented ceiling, centre
Chimneypiece at W. end marble, G.E. Street; Entrance tower
and staircase (Street) 20' dia. open centre well with 47
colonnettes, vaulted at top. Library and drawing room have
English Jacobean woodwork (with marquetry panels) and
plasterwork installed c. 1920, Billiard Room English 15th
century screen with gallery, chimneypiece and panelling.
Library (G.E. Street, now ballroom) 120' x 27' x 40, arched
ceiling, iron galleries, reading room off, rich scheme of
decoration, Lunette by James Pryde. Chapel (Street)
100' x 34' x 50' with vaulted apse, waggon roof and N.E.
chapel. Stalls (Street 1877) inlaid walnut from Florence,
additional woodwork Dr. Kelly, 16th century panelling in N.E.
chapel.

Statement of Interest

The 1859 and 1877-81 additions and alterations were

carried out for the 25th Earl of Crawford and Balcarres

(1812-80) and continued by his son the 26th earl.

Work was suspended in 1881 after the theft of the body of

the 25th earl and the estate advertised for sale in 1886,

but was not sold;. at that date the library was still not

occupied, the long gallery chimneypiece not assembled and

the chapel floor incomplete. In 1900 it was sold to A.C.

Pirie of Craibstone who employed G. Bennet Mitchell (then

of the architectural department of Davidson and Garden

Advocates) to design addition to the house and an

extensive scheme of estate, improvement comprising new

cottages at Echt and Dunecht (then Waterton). In 1907 it

was let to Lord Cowdray who purchased the estate outright

in 1912 commissioning Sir Aston Webb to make extensive

additions in 1913-20. Further alterations were made

internally by Dr. Kelly c. 1924-32.

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