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Latitude: 55.7356 / 55°44'8"N
Longitude: -3.9822 / 3°58'55"W
OS Eastings: 275635
OS Northings: 650916
OS Grid: NS756509
Mapcode National: GBR 02M3.NS
Mapcode Global: WH4R3.S3XB
Entry Name: Larkhall, Raploch Road, St Mary's Primary School, Including Gatepiers and Boundary Walls
Listing Date: 30 March 1998
Source: Historic Scotland
Source ID: 391931
Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB45120
Building Class: Cultural
County: South Lanarkshire
Electoral Ward: Larkhall
Traditional County: Lanarkshire
Circa 1872 with later alterations and additions. Single storey, 3-bay gabled and ecclesiastically detailed E-plan primary school (formerly as combined church) with paired modern halls with linking block to W. Snecked cream sandstone rubble with droved and polished dressings. Base course. Chamfered reveals to pointed-arched openings; aproned cills; buttresses to W elevation with trefoil brackets at eaves course.
N (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: bays grouped 2-1. 3 tall windows, evenly disposed, to gabled block to right; decorative cross to gablehead above. Window in each bay to left.
W (SIDE) ELEVATION: originally regularly fenestrated, 8-bay. Now 6-bay with flat-roofed single storey linking block at right angles from bays to outer right (S). Bipartite window (pointed-arched in 2 bays to outer left) in each bay; single window in bay to right, adjacent to projection.
E (SIDE) ELEVATION: 11-bay, grouped 1-3-3-3-1. 2 point-arched windows, evenly disposed, to advanced finialled gabled block to centre; crucifix motif to gablehead above; window to each piend roofed addition flanking. 3 windows, closely disposed in each recessed block flanking. Tall tripartite window in each advanced gabled bay to outer left and right; tall wallhead stack to left of right gable; window Memorial panel, 1902, in gablehead to left.
Timber sash and case and hopper windows. Grey slate roof; slab skews; tall ashlar stack to E; stylised thistlehead/shield motif to skewputts; finialled octagonal ridge vents; cast-iron rainwater goods.
INTERIOR: timber panelled (some part glazed) architraved door with tall fanlights; timber skirting boards; vertical boarding to dado rail height to hallways; part-glazed timber panelled folding screen partitioning main hall.
GATEPIERS AND BOUNDARY WALLS: square-plan chamfered ashlar piers with plinths, swept cornices and shallow ogee caps sited to N of main building. Squared sandstone rubble walls with stugged curved ashlar cope.
Until the Reformation in the 16th century, the Catholic faith thrived in Larkhall and was a main focus for the local community. The following centuries saw a decline, but by the mid 19th century, the numbers of Catholics in the area had grown so much that it became necessary to build a new church to accommodate them: the result was the chapel school. In 1872 the mission in Strathaven was closed and the Directory of 1873 reads, 'A beautiful chapel has been opened in Larkhall...'. The chapel school was made up of rooms 7, 6 and 8 and the headmaster's room. Part of room 7 was the sanctuary and the curtains were drawn across it during school house. On Saturday, desks were removed and the partition opened for Mass on a Sunday. William Hamilton of Raploch was one of the foremost persecutors of the Covenanters in the area and became known as 'The Persecuting Raploch'. His house stood on this site and he is buried in Dalserf churchyard.
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