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Culzean Castle Estate, Walled Garden, Including Gates, Garden's House, Garden's Cottage, Summerhouse, Grotto, Sundial, Potting Sheds and Frame Yard

A Category A Listed Building in Kirkoswald, South Ayrshire

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Latitude: 55.3507 / 55°21'2"N

Longitude: -4.7912 / 4°47'28"W

OS Eastings: 223126

OS Northings: 609845

OS Grid: NS231098

Mapcode National: GBR 43.4T8X

Mapcode Global: WH2Q6.CRPY

Entry Name: Culzean Castle Estate, Walled Garden, Including Gates, Garden's House, Garden's Cottage, Summerhouse, Grotto, Sundial, Potting Sheds and Frame Yard

Listing Date: 14 April 1971

Category: A

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 339558

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB7612

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Kirkoswald

County: South Ayrshire

Electoral Ward: Girvan and South Carrick

Parish: Kirkoswald

Traditional County: Ayrshire

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1752, enlarged circa 1830, with later additions. Round-cornered rectangular-plan walled garden enclosure, comprising a significant grouping of garden buildings and ancillaries from various periods; central E-W dividing wall, with glasshouses against the S side and stone sheds against the N side; large decorative entrance arch to SE (by Robert Adam) and 2 other entrances on E; further entrances on W and SW. Double skin garden wall of squared rubble on exterior and brick-lined internally, with slab coping. Garden's house partly integral to wall on centre N with low drystane enclosures flanking house on exterior N wall. L-plan garden's cottage partly integral to wall at SW. Stone sheds and frame yard against exterior of W wall. Sundial in centre of N garden. Timber summerhouse beside central wall in S garden. Rockery with grotto in SW quarter. Stone-lined water channel (Slip Dyke) on outside of S wall.

WALLED GARDEN: begun 1752, with mult-period alterations and additions. SE ENTRANCE: Robert Adam, 1786. Triumphal arch in classical style. External (E) elevation: v-jointed stonework to piers, with cornice at springing point and incised crosses in spandrels. Date carved in keystone. Internal (W) elevation: round-headed niches in spandrels. Cornice bisecting keystone. Parapet surmounted by carved stone urns. Ashlar construction. Double wrought iron gates with arched top and scrolled and foliated uprights. E ENTRANCE: arched aperture in centre of E wall, immediately to N of central wall. Double gates in painted timber. NE ENTRANCE: 1908. Wall scalloped to each side of opening to single gateway. Wrought iron gate of scrolled and foliated pattern with pine cone finials. S ENTRANCE: pair of detatched square piers, with panels and corniced coping surmounted by stone urns. Polished ashlar with droved ashlar block abutments to piers. Double gates of timber. W ENTRANCE: arched aperture with tooled ashlar voussoirs and pair of barred timber gates. Ashlar bell cote, with bell, on parapet.

GARDEN'S HOUSE: circa 1752; later interior alterations by ARP Lorimer, 1999-2000. 2-storey, 3-bay, rectangular-plan, plain classical dwelling house, integral to garden wall. S fa├žade of brick. Late 20th century glazed timber porch on stone base courses, and pair of single storey flanking pavilions to N. Squared rubble with ashlar dressings. S ELEVATION: blocked central doorway, with small window inserted. Bipartite windows to lower level, with small square windows above. Window to extension set into garden wall to left (W). N ELEVATION: central doorway flanked by rectangular windows. Square windows above. Lean-to extension on right (W), withone window to N. Timber fronted lean-to structure to left (E). 6-, 8- and 12-pane timber-framed sash and case windows. INTERIOR (seen 2010): early 19th century timber fire surround in living room (installed in 20th century). Timber window shutters in main room. Panelled timber doors with moulded architraves. Timber staircase. Scullery in outshot to W. No discernible original 18th century features.

GARDEN'S COTTAGE: mid 19th century. Single storey, Z-plan, (formed from L-plan with extension to N) gardener's cottage. Entrance in re-entrant angle, and integral to garden wall on E elevation. Squared rubble construction, with droved ashlar dressings. Harled extension. E ELEVATION (within garden): 1 square and 1 ocula window. N ELEVATION: 2 bays (window and door), gable with window to right. W ELEVATION: 2-bay extension to left, with single window in centre of gable and 2 further bays to left. Lying pane windows in timber sash and case. Glazed timber door. Slated roof with exposed rafter ends and 2 polygonal stone chimney stacks. INTERIOR (seen 2010): no original features extant.

SUMMERHOUSE: 1886. Single storey, rectangular-plan, rustic summerhouse, with piended roof, and veranda to front (S) and sides supported on unplaned tree trunk columns. Rustic summerhouse. Timber frame and timber cladding panels decorated with horizontal, vertical and diagonal timber strips. S ELEVATION: Central door flanked by full width glazing above spandrel panels faced with diagonal timber strips. E Elevation: biforate central window. N and W ELEVATIONS: blind. Timber framed windows with leaded uppers. Glazed timber door. Thatched heather roof. INTERIOR (seen 2010): timber benches with panelled backs fixed to walls on N, E and W sides. Timber-framed papered wall panels. Coombed ceiling. Timber floor. Pebble floor to veranda.

GROTTO: 1903. Irregular-plan rockery of ornamental stones enclosed by rubble retaining walls. Barrel vault through centre with apsidal recesses to sides of vault. Squared rubble vault, with rubble voussoirs, and random rubble walls below springing point.

SUNDIAL: 17th century. Pink stone obelisk serving as pedestal. Polyhedral carved and incised grey stone multiple dial upper, with bronze gnomons (fins). Plinth of grey ashlar blocks.

POTTING SHEDS: 1815. Single storey, lean-to range against N side of central wall. Gabled bay, with window, to left (E) of centre. Rubble construction, with timber-framed windows and doors of vertically boarded timber. Slated roofs, with skylights. 2 brick chimney stacks. INTERIORS (seen 2010): cement screed floors and timber rafters. Aperture through central wall in centre of range.

FRAME YARD: circa 1810. Low rubble wall enclosing yard with cylindrical entrance piers on W side. 2 brick lined frame pits. Single storey range of lean-to sheds to E, against exterior of W garden wall. Rubble construction, with slated roofs. Open loggia arrangement with some bays containing vertically boarded timber doors with inset windows.

Statement of Interest

Part of an A-group at Culzean Castle Estate comprising: Culzean Castle; Castle Walls etc; Fountain Court etc; Ruined Arch and Viaduct; Stable Block etc; Camellia House; Cat Gates; Home Farm; Powder House; Ardlochan Lodge; Dolphin House; Hoolity Ha'; Swan Pond Complex; Swan Pond Ice House; Walled Garden; Bathing Complex; Water Works; Shore Boat House; Battery and Mast House; Main Drive Walls and Piers; Gas Works.

Culzean Walled Garden comprises an outstanding group of 18th, 19th and early 20th century garden structures within classically proportioned gardens. Culzean was renowned for horticulture and its garden terraces below the castle by the beginning of the 18th century. This additional walled garden was established in 1752, by the 8th Earl of Cassillis, and it employed the latest type of heated wall system - the remains of the furnace lie buried to the NE of the central dividing wall. Garden's House probably dates from this time and there are indications that it was originally a boarding house for gardening staff. The internal partitions would have been altered to create family rooms when it became the house of the head gardener in the 19th century. The frame yard, designed specifically for growing melons was installed to the specifications of gardener, John Reid, by the 12th Earl. The garden was enlarged at least twice, most significantly in the 1830s, with a new primarily ornamental south garden. The SE gateway, by Robert Adam, was probably moved to its present position at that time as it was becoming fashionable for the gentry to take visitors to view their glasshouses. The vinery, of 1859 and the peach house, of 1877, which also contained aquaria, or fish hatcheries, were demolished in the 1950s. The former was reconstructed, by ARP Lorimer, architects in 2000. The summerhouse, described as a tea house in the Gardener's Magazine (1901), was erected by estate masons and joiners and probably designed by the 3rd Marquess of Ailsa, based on Laugier's rustic cabin; it was built for Lord Charles to help him recover from diptheria. He also commissioned the Grotto, of 1903, which seems to revive an 18th century fashion. The sundial, which appears to be a composite piece, came from Calder House, West Lothian. It was presented to the National Trust for Scotland in 1971 and was restored in 1984.

Together with the outstanding ornamental landscape of its estate, Culzean Castle is acknowledged as the epitome of the Picturesque movement in Scotland, in its own right and is a work of international importance. Culzean, at one time the largest estate in Ayrshire, has been associated with the Kennedy family since the Middle Ages. It was gifted by Gilbert the 4th Earl of Cassillis to his brother Thomas Kennedy, in 1569. In the 1660s, the barmekin around the tower house was breached to create the terraced gardens, orchards, and walled garden for which Culzean was notable, while the caves beneath the castle (a scheduled monument) were fortified to serve as secure stores. Culzean Castle became the principal family seat when Sir Thomas Kennedy (1726-75) became the 9th Earl of Cassillis, in 1759. A continuing programme of improvements was undertaken by Sir Thomas and his successors during the 18th and 19th centuries. The 10th Earl began rebuilding the Castle to designs by Robert Adam. This work was continued by Archibald (1770-1846), the 12th Earl, later the 1st Marquess of Ailsa. From about 1810 onwards he commissioned numerous structures, both practical and ornamental, and several important architects and landscape designers were engaged to embellish the gardens and grounds with ponds, gates, lodges and pavilions, resulting in several key works of the Picturesque era. The 3rd Marquess undertook the modernisation and enlargement of the Castle in the 1870s. In 1945, the 5th Marquess of Ailsa divided the property, making over the Castle, and the policies immediately surrounding it, to the National Trust for Scotland.

The Walled Garden was previously listed at Category B, and formerly described as 'Walled Gardens and Gardener's Cottage'. Listing changed to category A as part of the Culzean Castle Estate Review, 2010-11.

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