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85-87 Waterloo Quay, Aberdeen

A Category B Listed Building in Aberdeen, Aberdeen

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Latitude: 57.1453 / 57°8'43"N

Longitude: -2.0811 / 2°4'51"W

OS Eastings: 395192

OS Northings: 806049

OS Grid: NJ951060

Mapcode National: GBR SFV.RM

Mapcode Global: WH9QR.0N9P

Plus Code: 9C9V4WW9+4H

Entry Name: 85-87 Waterloo Quay, Aberdeen

Listing Name: 87 Waterloo Quay and 1 Wellington Street

Listing Date: 19 March 1984

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 355580

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB20594

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Aberdeen

County: Aberdeen

Town: Aberdeen

Electoral Ward: George St/Harbour

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire

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Attributed to John Smith (see Notes), 1837. 3-storey and attic, 3-bay well-proportioned former Custom House building in the Classical style. Grey granite ashlar. Base course and channelled rustication to ground floor (S elevation); cill course at 1st floor; blocking course and substantial moulded cornice. Segmental arched openings at ground floor. Double-leaf timber door to 1st bay; segmental-arched tripartite fanlight above. 2-bay, single-storey wing to left. Moulded margins and projecting architraves to 1st floor openings; raised cills at 2nd floor. 4-bays to E elevation; blind openings to 1st and 2nd bays at upper floors; wallhead nepus gable stack with central attic window and coping. Further, slightly recessed bay to far right with door to ground floor and further wallhead gable. Single round 'porthole' window to rear (W) elevation.

12-pane timber sash and case windows. Grey slate roof,; coped ashlar end stacks.

INTERIOR: converted in 1980's to offices. Plaster cornices to principal ground floor rooms; timber balustraded dog-leg stair case; boardroom with decorative cornice plasterwork and integral timber chimneypiece. Large, shallow-vaulted basement with flagstone floor and brick shelving.

Statement of Interest

87 Waterloo Quay is well-tailored to its prominent corner position overlooking the harbour. The building's refined Classical styling has been attributed to John Smith, the renowned 19th century architect responsible for much of Classical Aberdeen. His Classical commercial and residential plan designs for the harbour area were only carried out in part, and much of his work was demolished during the mid 20th century in order to attract new shipping business to the area. No 87, built for the then recently established Aberdeen Steam Navigation Company, is a rare survival from his original plan and it is likely he had a hand in the design of the building itself.

The harbour at Aberdeen accounts for the city's prosperity, representing the key to its history. Development of Aberdeen Harbour gathered momentum from the late 18th century when the physical restrictions caused by the shallow depth of the Dee estuary became problematic for increasingly heavy trade. In the 18th century, the Shiprow quayside was greatly increased forming the terrace which was to become Regent Quay. The 18th century buildings that line Regents Quay originally looked out over the sands and tributaries of the Dee, before the construction of Vicoria Dock (1848). John Wood's map of 1810 shows the location for the intended wet dock, running the length of the as yet unnamed Trinity, Regent and Waterloo quays, all designed by renowned engineer Thomas Telford during the 1840's.

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