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Redford House, Redford Road, Edinburgh

A Category B Listed Building in Edinburgh, Edinburgh

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Coordinates

Latitude: 55.9059 / 55°54'21"N

Longitude: -3.241 / 3°14'27"W

OS Eastings: 322511

OS Northings: 668779

OS Grid: NT225687

Mapcode National: GBR 8CZ.0D

Mapcode Global: WH6SS.5TXC

Plus Code: 9C7RWQ45+8J

Entry Name: Redford House, Redford Road, Edinburgh

Listing Name: 133, 135 and 137 Redford Road, Redford House with Former Bleaching House, Other Outbuildings and Boundary Wall

Listing Date: 14 December 1970

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 365557

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB28115

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Edinburgh

County: Edinburgh

Town: Edinburgh

Electoral Ward: Colinton/Fairmilehead

Traditional County: Midlothian

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Colinton

Description

Probably circa 1712 with numerous later additions and possibly incorporating later 17th century fabric. Converted to 3 houses circa 1952. Predominantly 2-storey roughly symmetrical U-plan house with single-storey wings forming forecourt to NW; later 18th century central octagonal 3-storey entrance tower with clumsy Victorian porch (see Notes); long, irregularly fenestrated range to S composed of several blocks of different dates, with later swept dormers flanking centre and some gable-head stacks. White-painted harling and white-painted sandstone cills. Very plain with almost no decorative details.

NW (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: semi-octagonal entrance tower, regularly fenestrated; advanced Victorian porch at ground; modern 2-leaf timber panelled front door at ground to centre with diamond-glazed fanlight, raised parapet above; flanking windows. Recessed bays flanking turret with slightly advanced gables; stone-mullioned bipartite windows at ground and first floor; double-arched recesses with cills to gable apex; gablehead stacks. Irregularly fenestrated bays flanking to left and right. Long single-storey wings outshot to outer left and right; NW gables irregularly fenestrated with blind windows; gablehead stacks. Irregular fenestration to forecourt; left-hand wing with circa 1910 8-light canted bay

NE ELEVATION (NUMBER 133): circa 1950 porch advanced to centre with half-glazed timber panelled door and 3 windows. Advanced piend-roofed bay to outer left with single window.

SE (GARDEN) ELEVATION: long irregular range stepped back to E (right) end. Advanced piend-roofed bay to centre outshot from earlier gabled bay with gablehead stack; single window at ground; upper floor slightly jettied out with tripartite window. Tall, narrow swept-roof dormers flanking centre; large swept-roof canted dormers to right and left; dormer to left corbelled out at 1st floor; dormer to right above advanced bipartite bay. Circa 1890 bay to outer left with nepus gable. 3 bays recessed to outer right; central bay circa 1910 with arched loggia at ground and pavilion roof.

SW ELEVATION (NUMBER 137): long irregularly fenestrated range with thistle-finialled gable to outer right; tripartite window to gable with taller central light. Penultimate bay to right is former dovecot; 1950s porch at ground with glazed door. Tripartite window to outer left.

Predominantly small-pane glazing in timber sash and case windows. Coped stacks with some decorative clay cans. Painted ashlar-coped skews. Graded grey slate.

INTERIOR:

NUMBER 133 (EAST WING): drawing room circa 1910; Arts and Crafts style carved timber chimney piece; coved ceiling with Lorimer-style plasterwork forming bands across ceiling.

NUMBER 135 (MAIN HOUSE): Staircase (circa 1820) in entrance hall; cast-iron balusters with anthemium motifs and mahogany hand rail. Identical balusters to back stair. Drawing room with compartmental plaster ceiling; large fireplace with stone inset and possibly later surround. Bedroom with decorative panelling and compartmental ceilings; timber chimney piece. Fireplaces in most other bedrooms. Timber panelled interior doors throughout with brass door furniture.

NUMBER 137 (WEST WING): dovecot with some surviving nesting boxes in attic.

BLEACHING HOUSE: small sandstone rubble bleaching house with grey slate roof to SE of house by burn.

FORMER COACH HOUSE, POTTING SHED AND BOILER HOUSE: U-plan group to NE of house. Gabled former coach house to left; piend-roofed, irregularly fenestrated former potting shed (or other outbuilding), irregularly fenestrated; lean-to former boiler-house (see notes) with half-glazed door breaking eaves and window, chimney stack in brick garden wall behind. Rendered walls. Pantiled roofs with slate easing course. Ashlar-coped skews.

BOUNDARY WALL: ashlar-coped random rubble boundary wall to NE of garden; gateway at N end.

Statement of Interest

An interesting and complex house built over a long period of time. Although the owners of the house have been well-documented, there is unfortunately little record of the various building stages. The land around Redford seems to have originally formed part of the Colinton Castle estate, which was owned by the Foulis family. The Redford estate became a separate entity in 1674 when the eldest son of Sir James Foulis was raised to the Bench and took the title of Lord Redford. It is not known whether Lord Redford built a house for himself on the estate, or even if one already existed. In about 1712 the estate was sold to Mr George Haliburton, who was Lord Provost of Edinburgh. It is likely that it was he who built the present house. During the eighteenth century the estate passed through several hands, and in 1799 was purchased by Mr Alexander Trotter, who owned the Dreghorn estate, which bordered the other side of Redford Road. In 1865 both the Dreghorn and Redford estates were purchased by R A McFie, who erected the Drummond Scrolls, and Covenanters' Monument using ornamental stonework taken from William Adam's old Royal Infirmary (see separate list descriptions for details). In May 1759 an advertisement for the lease of Redford House was placed in the Edinburgh Evening Chronicle, which described the house in some detail. The house comprised of "a kitchen, dining room, parlour, four bedrooms, three closets, pantry, cellar, coal-house, milk-house, room for servants, a stable and a good pigeon house", also a "washing house very proper for bleaching". From this description, it would seem likely that the wings were already built. The dovecot still exists as part of number 137, and some of the nesting boxes are still visible in the attic. The photograph accompanying the entry for Redford House in "Castles and Mansions of the Lothians" is also very useful, as it shows that the nepus-gabled section to the left of the garden front had not yet been built, and that the canted dormers were originally flush with the walls. The boiler house, in the garden of number 133, first appears on the 1894 OS map, and was used to heat the greenhouse that was on the other side of the garden wall.

The octagonal entrance tower is very similar to one at Foulis Castle (near Kiltearn in Ross & Cromarty). This may or may not have been intentional. There are no known links between the Foulis family of Colinton and Foulis Castle, which belonged to the Munro family, and by the time the octagonan tower at Redford was built, the Foulis family no longer owned Redford House. However, it is possible that the person who built the octagonal tower at Redford, knew about the one at Foulis Castle, and thought it appropriate to copy it.

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