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Birgham, Springhill House Including Dovecot, Well, Quadrant Walls, Gatepiers and Gates

A Category B Listed Building in Eccles, Scottish Borders

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Coordinates

Latitude: 55.6424 / 55°38'32"N

Longitude: -2.3418 / 2°20'30"W

OS Eastings: 378586

OS Northings: 638814

OS Grid: NT785388

Mapcode National: GBR D326.T5

Mapcode Global: WH8XV.0F5T

Entry Name: Birgham, Springhill House Including Dovecot, Well, Quadrant Walls, Gatepiers and Gates

Listing Date: 9 June 1971

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 335346

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB4117

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Eccles

County: Scottish Borders

Electoral Ward: Mid Berwickshire

Parish: Eccles

Traditional County: Berwickshire

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Description

Late 18th century; William Leitch alterations, 1816; substantial later 19th century additions and alterations. 2-storey with basement, 3-bay, rectangular-plan classical villa with later full-height, near L-plan wing at rear; 2-storey, flat-roofed addition in rear re-entrant angle. Coursed cream sandstone ashlar to front main house; coursed and droved cream sandstone to sides and rear; coursed and tooled sandstone to basement; ashlar dressings. Squared and snecked stugged cream sandstone to later wing (rake-jointed in part); sandstone ashlar dressings. Raised band course at principal floor; raised eaves course; corniced eaves. Rusticated quoins; architraved surrounds to main openings; raised margins to remainder; pilaster mullions to Venetian lights; projecting cills throughout. Roofless, mono-pitched dovecot to W. Roofless gabled structure enclosing well to SW.

SE (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: steps oversailing basement to entrance centred at ground; plain iron balustrades. Entrance comprising 2-leaf timber panelled door, plate glass fanlight, architraved surround, pedimented doorpiece with engaged columns; single window aligned at 1st floor. Venetian windows at ground in bays to outer left and right; single windows aligned at 1st floor. Irregularly disposed basement openings.

SW (SIDE) ELEVATION: original house with single windows at all floors in both bays; narrow window at ground in later bay to left. Full-height, 3-bay wing slightly recessed to left with bipartite windows at all floors in bay to right; single windows at basement and ground floors in central bay; bipartite window aligned at 1st floor; single windows at all floors in bay to outer left.

NW (REAR) ELEVATION: original house with single windows at all floors in bay to outer left; Venetian stair (?) window at centre; 2-storey, flat-roofed addition obscuring floors below. Projecting wing to right with single windows at all floors in central bay; single window at ground off-set to left of centre; boarded timber opening at basement in bay to outer left.

NE (SIDE) ELEVATION: original house with single windows at all floors in both bays. 2-storey, flat-roofed addition recessed to right with single window centred at upper floor. Full-height wing set behind with single window at 1st floor in bay to left; bipartite basement window to right with single windows aligned at ground and 1st floors. Full-height wing advanced to outer right with single windows centred at all floors.

Predominantly 12-pane glazing in timber sash and case windows (some 4-, 10- and 20-pane glazing); various rooflights. Grey slate piended roof; replacement rainwater goods. Corniced sandstone ridge and wallhead stacks; various circular cans.

INTERIOR: not seen 1998.

DOVECOT: mono-pitched, lectern dovecot to W of house. Squared sandstone rubble to front; harl-pointed rubble to sides and rear. Rubble quoins; continuous alighting ledge/rat course. SE (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: square-headed door opening at centre. Roofless; raised skews. INTERIOR: some timber nesting boxes.

WELL: roofless, rectangular-plan rubble structure enclosing well set to SW of house. Harl-pointed sandstone rubble; tooled rubble dressings. S (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: square-headed opening at centre. N (REAR) ELEVATION: small square-headed window opening at centre; plaque above inscribed 'St Anne's Well, Spring Found 6th June 1859'. INTERIOR: wheel in place 1998.

QUADRANT WALLS, GATEPIERS AND GATES: coped sandstone rubble walls flanking entrance to N. Square-plan coursed sandstone piers; pyramidal caps; 2-leaf, spearheaded iron gates.

Statement of Interest

Copies of plans and elevations, dated 15 June 1816, are held in the SRO. Signed by William Leitch (noted as 'Factor, Home Estates), these were commissioned by the Rt Hon Sir Alec Douglas-Home. Once a dower-house of The Hirsel (see separate list entry, Coldstream Parish), this impressive classical villa retains much of its original detailing - the Venetian windows and pedimented doorpiece being particularly notable. Rutherfurd notes a Miss Hunter and Miss Elizabeth Bell as occupants in 1866. The former stable block (now Springhill Gardener's Cottage) is listed separately.

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