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Luffness, House with East Wing Stables and Yard. the Pend, Italian Garden and Sundials

A Category A Listed Building in Aberlady, East Lothian

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Coordinates

Latitude: 56.0143 / 56°0'51"N

Longitude: -2.8438 / 2°50'37"W

OS Eastings: 347488

OS Northings: 680470

OS Grid: NT474804

Mapcode National: GBR 2P.T31L

Mapcode Global: WH7TQ.9316

Entry Name: Luffness, House with East Wing Stables and Yard. the Pend, Italian Garden and Sundials

Listing Date: 5 February 1971

Category: A

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 338174

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB6551

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Aberlady

County: East Lothian

Electoral Ward: North Berwick Coastal

Traditional County: East Lothian

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Aberlady

Description

Baronial Mansion with complex building history. On site of, possibly incorporating parts of earlier castle sacked 1548, nucleus of present house is T-plan tower house of 1584 - panel with date and initials of builder, Sir Patrick Hepburn and wife, Isobel, reset in SW bartizan. Tower House largely obscured by 19th century additions. William Burn extended house to NW, 1822 and filled in SW corner. Thomas Brown added kitchen wing, 1825 and W extension, 1841. David Bryce, 1846-1874, added gunroom and stable courts to SE, service wing to NW and further additions including interior remodelling. Work continued by D and J Bryce, 1891, billiard room addition, Barbour and Bowie, 1907.

TOWER HOUSE: clearly of more than 1 period, indicated by change in quoins and window mouldings above 2nd string course of stair window. 1584 tower orientated E-W, stair continued in square tower to S. Random rubble with ashlar dressings; 2 wide-mouthed gun loops remain visible at ground level, others in 2 bartizans carried on chequered and rope moulded corbels at SW and NE corners. Stair to upper levels contained in turret in SE re-entrant angle carried on squinch arch.

19TH CENTURY ADDITIONS: 1802-3; 2-storey wing with canted bay at E end added to NE of main block. Large roll-moulded windows at ground and 1st floors; polygonal hipped roof (see Gilpin drawings) replaced with gables inset with re-used panels of foliate carving by Thomas Brown 1841. SW angle between stair tower and main block infilled by William Burn, 1822, with 3 storey wing, slightly recessed on plan, of contrasting red squared rubble. Ground and 1st floor windows flanked by re-used 17th century decorative panels, heraldic panel to gable (see notes). SW skewputt, also re-used, bears Hepburn initials SPH and EH. All openings with broad stop-chamfered surrounds, bipartite window openings, blacony with scrolled Jacobean brackets at 1st floor. Dog-leg stair at NW gable, probably Burn, with similar balustrade. Thomas Brown, 1825, 2-storey kitchen block to NE in picturesque style; masons Hunter and Bowman of Aberlady. Large arched service door with ornamented surround, large trefoil window above, under overhanging bracketted cat-slide eaves. Adjoining block at right angles with 2 tall round arched windows, steeply pitched gabled bellcote dormer corbelled out and breaking eaves at centre round arched opening to bell. Giant blind arcade with window above on N return. 1846. Main entrance on E elevation enlarged by David Bryce, with stone benches flanking doorway. 3-storey round tower corbelled to square at upper storey (probably Bryce), with service access and tunnel from the N, terminating in The Pend to main road; large round arched gateway with 2 orders of facetted blocks, possibly incorporating earlier stonework topped by blind parapet carried on square corbels. Interior remodelled by Bryce (see below). EAST WING, AND STABLES: David Bryce and later John Bryce, Baronial styel, between 1846 and 1891; adjoining house to SE, connected by screen wall with archway. EAST WING: dated 1891 2-storey wing with turret and arcade at

ground floor, 1st floor corbelled out to E, pedimented dormerheads with finials breaking eaves, dormer to E with blank circular panel, possibly for a clock. Sash and case windows with 2-pane lower, 9-pane upper sash glazing pattern. Crowstepped gables, bracketted eaves, grey slates, ashlar coped wallhead and paired diamond stacks, piended rooflight. Dated initialled panel to gable at rear. BILLIARD ROOM: Barbour and Bowie, 1907; single storey addition to garden elevation of gunroom. Canted 5-light bay to left with crenellated parapet, 2 windows to right breaking eaves in semi-circular pedimented dormerheads with dated initialled panel and scrollwork. Polygonal turret advanced at right with 4 windows. Crenellated curtain wall and 2 canted bays at ground linking to main house. STABLE YARD: enclosed by battlemented wall with blind arcade at ground, turret at NE corner with candlesnuffer roof; finial and weather-vane. Entrance through large round arched battlemented gateway in curtain wall; further gateway to E with square gatepiers. STABLES: 2-storey, double-pile block with 2 doorways and windows at ground, 6 windows at 1st floor breaking eaves in pedimented dormerheads. Now converted to housing, forestair to 1st floor to E. Turret with weather-vane. Part of court to W glazed over. Sash and case windows with 12-pane glazing pattern, crowstepped gables, grey slates. Sash and case windows; predominantly 2-pane glazing pattern with some 12-pane glazing at rear. Crowstepped gables, ornamented stone finials, raised grouped diamond stacks by Burn. Grey slates, some decorative gutter fixtures. Mounting block in courtyard. INTERIOR: largely by David Bryce; remodelling of entrance hall with glazed doors formed like yetts, fireplace 1849. Library extended to SW by Burn, interior by Bryce 1874, with geometric plasterwork ceiling and cedarwood panelling, Wirth Brothers, Edinburgh, encompassing bookshelves, with block cornice and plant ornament. A double sided chimneypiece divides room into 2 with Jacobean motifs and pilasters wuth plant ornament to cedarwood overmantels. Wide newel stair to 1st and 2nd floor in S stair tower by Bryce, top floor and attic served by turret stair. Some original moulded door surrounds and tiny wall chambers survive. ITALIAN GARDEN: sunken parterre to S of house laid out in wheel of radiating beds enclosed by lawn. Until World War I, extended into moat with herbaceous borders. SUNDIALS: wall mounted sundial featuring sculptured soldier's head near well in S court. 2nd sundial dated 1759 as centrepiece of Italian garden.

Statement of Interest

The site of Luffness is an early Norse settlement: graves have been found within the grounds and foundations. The barony was associated with the de Lindsay and Bickerton Families in the 12th, 13th and 14th centuries, the remains of a Carmelite Friary are situated with the policies to the W which received a grant in alms from the estate (see INVENTORY NO 1). The present house is built on the site of an early 16th century fortification, of which extensive remains can be found in the grounds. Evidence of 4 corner tower, 1 now accommodating an ice house, and a wet moat are visible. The fort is said to have been constructed by General de Thermes to defend Aberlady Bay and access to Haddington during the "rough wooing" in the early 1540s. The fort was ordered to be destroyed in 1551, the Hepburn family taking possession in the 1580's built the present tower house on the foundations of the earlier keep. Luffness was bought by the Earl of Hopetoun in 1739, and has since been occupied by the Hope Family. it is thought that the 17th century sculpted ornamental plaques re-used on the E and SW additions by Burn may have come from the 1st Hopetoun House. Walled garden to W, garden walls, Gardener's House, Water Tower and Dovecots are listed separately, linked in an A Group.

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