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Betson Street, Markinch Centre with Boundary Walls and Lamp

A Category B Listed Building in Markinch, Fife

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Latitude: 56.2012 / 56°12'4"N

Longitude: -3.135 / 3°8'6"W

OS Eastings: 329676

OS Northings: 701529

OS Grid: NO296015

Mapcode National: GBR 2B.F9N8

Mapcode Global: WH6RG.TD9G

Entry Name: Betson Street, Markinch Centre with Boundary Walls and Lamp

Listing Date: 1 March 1996

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 389246

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB42940

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Markinch

County: Fife

Town: Markinch

Electoral Ward: Glenrothes North, Leslie and Markinch

Traditional County: Fife

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James Gillespie & Scott, 1897-9, extended 1920. 2-storey with attic, L-plan Scots Renaissance municipal building with bracketed stone balcony. Squared and snecked rubble with ashlar quoins and harl. Deep battered base course, string course, 1st floor cill course and eaves cornice. Crowstepped gables, pedimented dormerheads, basket-arched openings at ground, stone transoms and mullions, rounded arrises.

E (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: 2-bay with recessed crowstepped gable to right and lower helm-roof to left. Recessed bay to right with 2 steps up to panelled timber door and 10-pane fanlight to left, window to right. String course and 1st floor cill course above with corniced transomed tripartite window at 1st floor, arrow-slit at gablehead. Bay to left with steps and flanking walls leading to porch with part-glazed boarded timber 2-leaf doors in roll-moulded surround to right below full width stone balustraded balcony with moulded ashlar bracket to outer left; tall transomed window at 1st floor centre breaking eaves in semicircular-pedimented dormerhead. Return to right with glazed arrow-slit at ground with small window at 1st floor and corbelled flag-pole base in re-entrant angle.

S ELEVATION: 3-bay with 2-bay single storey extension to left. Centre bay with small window to right and window to left, glazed arrow-slit in bay to right with further window to left and 2 bipartite windows to outer left in extension. 1st floor slightly recessed in centre bay with glazed, keystoned oculus to right and window to left, wall above forming blind parapet to recessed tripartite window below catslide roof with rooflight at centre and above in roof pitch; tall transomed window in bay to right with semicircular pediment in gablehead; window in bay to left with arrow-slit at gablehead and tall corner wallhead stack breaking skew to outer left.

W ELEVATION: blank gable of single storey wing to right. Gable to left with hoodmoulded, transomed tripartite window at 1st floor and arrow-slit at gablehead (ground floor obscured).

N ELEVATION: narrow window to outer right and left at ground and dominant shouldered wallhead stack at centre.

Taller windows fixed(?) small-pane glazing pattern above transoms with fixed(?) 6-pane over 2-pane glazing pattern below. Remaining windows, small pane upper over 2-pane lower sashes in timber sash and case windows except 1st floor left to S, upper sash with plate glass glazing and extractor fan. Grey and red slates. Cavetto coped squared rubble stacks with cans, decorative ridge tiles and cast-iron downpipes with decorative rainwater hoppers.

BOUNDARY WALL AND LAMP: semicircular-coped rubble boundary walls. Decorative finialled cast-iron gas (Provost?) lamp and bracket over main door to E.

Statement of Interest

Markinch became a Police Burgh in 1889, its first Provost William Dewar, and the municipal buildings a gift to the community from the Balbirnie family. A brass plate over the fireplace of the Council chamber bears the words "This building was presented to the Burgh in 1889, in memory of John Balfour of Balbirnie, Grenadier Guards...." with the family arms and motto (Cunningham p30). The 1920 extension was funded by Messrs Tullis Russell "for the use of mill workers and residents. It includes a library and facilities for indoor games, including billiards and badminton". Gillespie & Scott carried out many commissions for Tullis Russell and probably this also; archive records mention "railings and lettering on gable, 1926", possibly eroded lettering behind the Provost lamp and the balusters above. There is also mention of a caretaker?s house, 1927.

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