History in Structure

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Simprim Farm

A Category C Listed Building in Swinton, Scottish Borders

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Latitude: 55.7009 / 55°42'3"N

Longitude: -2.2406 / 2°14'26"W

OS Eastings: 384976

OS Northings: 645293

OS Grid: NT849452

Mapcode National: GBR D2SJ.Q7

Mapcode Global: WH9YM.KZ81

Plus Code: 9C7VPQ25+8Q

Entry Name: Simprim Farm

Listing Name: Simprim Farm, Old Barn

Listing Date: 25 September 1998

Category: C

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 354066

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB19667

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Swinton

County: Scottish Borders

Electoral Ward: Mid Berwickshire

Parish: Swinton

Traditional County: Berwickshire

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Dated 1686 with later additions and alterations. 3-storey, originally L plan former laird?s house (?), now barn with crowstepped gables; substantial lean-to additions obscuring elevations to N, E and W. Harl-pointed sandstone rubble; polished sandstone dressings. Long and short surrounds to chamfered openings (segmental-arched at ground; square-headed to upper floors).

E (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: segmental-arched entrance with boarded timber door at ground in penultimate bay to outer left; single windows aligned above (blocked at 2nd floor). Single storey addition adjoining bay to outer left; blocked single windows at both floors above. Blocked, segmental-arched opening at ground off-set to right of centre; single windows aligned above. Boarded timber door in segmental-arched opening at ground in subsequent bay to right; single windows aligned above; lean-to addition to front. Large square headed opening in subsequent bay to right with lean-to addition to front. Single storey addition set in re-entrant angle to right; single windows aligned at upper floors. Full-height wing projecting to outer right.

W (REAR) ELEVATION: projecting full-height gabled wing off-set to left of centre; lean-to additions in flanking bays. Some original openings visible within.

S (SIDE) ELEVATION: blocked opening at ground; blocked windows aligned at upper floors. Lean-to addition to outer left; tuskings of previous wall running full height of barn to right; single storey addition to outer right.

N (SIDE) ELEVATION: crowstepped wing to right with substantial addition obscuring lower floors; single opening centred in surmounting gablehead. Lean-to addition adjoined to outer right. Crowstepped wing to outer left obscured.

Windows predominantly blocked (some 6-pane timber glazing). Corrugated-iron roof (slate in part); crowstepped skews; moulded skewputts. Cast-iron rainwater goods; circular ridge ventilators. Corniced apex stack to N; single circular can.

INTERIOR: harl-pointed rubble walls (part whitewashed, part brick); some segmental-arched openings. Square-headed internal door (to upper floors?) with boarded timber door; sandstone lintel inscribed 'AC. 1686'; rubble voussoirs to surmounting segmental arch. Remainder not seen 1998.

Statement of Interest

A rare example of a late 17th century structure, notable for its substantial height and length, as well as the retention of some good detailing. Today (1998) surrounded by modern additions, it forms part of Simprim Farm. According to the STATISTICAL ACCOUNT, this was "...the most conspicuous object in Simprin....built by the Cockburns, consisting of a threshing floor and large and lofty granaries. Lord Elibank thinking its height exposed it to storms, lowered the roof considerably, but left the gabels [sic] standing, so that they still shew the original altitude of the building, which is seen from almost every part of Berwickshire." The subsequent STATISTICAL ACCOUNT notes it was regularly used by Thomas Boston, minister of the nearby Simprim Church, for "...sacramental and other extraordinary occasions." According to the present owner, none of the original machinery remains.

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