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Old Walled Garden, The Glen

A Category C Listed Building in Traquair, Scottish Borders

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Latitude: 55.5868 / 55°35'12"N

Longitude: -3.1188 / 3°7'7"W

OS Eastings: 329579

OS Northings: 633139

OS Grid: NT295331

Mapcode National: GBR 63NV.L3

Mapcode Global: WH6VD.2T4Z

Plus Code: 9C7RHVPJ+PF

Entry Name: Old Walled Garden, The Glen

Listing Name: The Glen, Old Walled Garden Including Gatepiers and Gates

Listing Date: 12 August 2003

Category: C

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 396896

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB49389

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Traquair

County: Scottish Borders

Electoral Ward: Tweeddale East

Parish: Traquair

Traditional County: Peeblesshire

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Circa 1857 (probably by landscape gardeners working under David Bryce and constructed by Glen Estate masons) with possibly early 19th century gatepiers. Rectangular-plan, high walled kitchen garden with canted angles to N wall and formal entrance to S with paired gates; lesser gateways to other elevations. Whinstone rubble walls, ashlar long and short quoins to angle; tall ashlar gatepiers with moulded flat caps. Decorative wrought-iron gates.

S (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: high whinstone rubble wall with flat stone copes curving down to lower central wall from higher angles (with ashlar quoins); partially collapsing to centre. To right, pair of tall squared ashlar gatepiers with strap detail just below squared and moulded cap; pair of ornate scrollwork wrought-iron gates with spear finials. Similarly detailed walls to other elevations with plainer entrances.

INTERIOR: formerly with range of glasshouses along the interior of the N wall, following canted sides and terminating in pavilion-like structures; glasshouses now removed, wall plan remains. Original planting plan now lost, along with internal fruit wall; central path; garden latterly used for the cultivation of conifers (probably used to supply wooded areas on the estate).

Statement of Interest

A-Group with all other Glen Estate buildings. Sited near the centre of the estate and built into a sloped site. The Glen estate can be traced as far back as 1296 when Sarra of the Glen swore allegiance to King Edward I of England. The estate remained in the family's hand until around 1512, when the grounds became fragmented and parts were sold to neighbouring landowners and families. By the 1700's, there were 2 main parts of the estate, Easter and Wester Glen. Easter Glen was sold to Alexander Allan (an Edinburgh banker) in 1796 for #10,500. At this point, the house was a fairly small plain farmhouse. His son, William Allan (Lord Provost of Edinburgh) was responsible for enlarging and extending the house, the architect being his friend William Playfair (see The Temple, listed separately); even after improvement it was still not regarded as being fit for a landowner's principal residence. The 3,500-acre estate was bought in 1852/3 by Sir Charles Tennant, owner of the chemical works of St. Rollox, Glasgow, for #33,140. The house was by then outdated and not suited to modern family life; he commissioned David Bryce to design a baronial style house, to which a tower (also by Bryce) was added in 1874. Tennant continually improved the estate landscape (1860-1890) and was responsible for the building of a school, farm, worker's and estate cottages, walled kitchen garden and kennels making The Glen virtually self-sufficient. In 1897, there were approximately 105 estate workers doing a range of jobs; including maids, cooks and servants within the house and gardeners, foresters, shepherds, carters, cattlemen and gamekeepers on the estate. The estate had its own masons and joiners, as well as its own whinstone quarries (remains of one are sited to the E of this garden). It is likely the garden plan would have been drawn up by the landscape gardeners who were overseeing the work on the terraces and executed by the estate masons. It was primarily designed as a kitchen garden, for the growing of vegetables and fruit. The garden nearer the house was the flower and exotic plant garden. This more practical garden had a range of glasshouses along the N wall (which received the most heat and sunshine). It had an internal dividing wall (height unknown) that may have been used to grow fruit trees and bushes against. The potting yard was down by the formal gardens and plants would have been transferred to this garden. To the E of the garden is a derelict structure that is marked on early maps as 'kennel'; it could be that it became obsolete for its original purpose (as 2 later purpose built kennel blocks were constructed) and it may them have been used for timber and joinery work or to house a gardener. The estate functioned like a community until the 1920s. The Tennants lost money during the Wall Street Crash and this had a knock on effect, as estate workers lost their jobs and tied housing. The numbers on the estate swelled again during World War II, when 48 landgirls came (4 married Glen men and never left). This garden was abandoned and later became a conifer nursery. Listed due to its importance within an intact later 19th century estate (other estate buildings are listed separately).

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