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Traquair House, Walled Garden

A Category B Listed Building in Traquair, Scottish Borders

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Coordinates

Latitude: 55.6065 / 55°36'23"N

Longitude: -3.0665 / 3°3'59"W

OS Eastings: 332907

OS Northings: 635284

OS Grid: NT329352

Mapcode National: GBR 730M.X1

Mapcode Global: WH6VD.VBYT

Entry Name: Traquair House, Walled Garden

Listing Date: 12 August 2003

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 396921

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB49404

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Traquair

County: Scottish Borders

Electoral Ward: Tweeddale East

Traditional County: Peeblesshire

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Traquair

Description

1749 for Charles Stuart, 5th Earl of Traquair (11th Laird). 3-sided, rectangular-plan walled kitchen garden with canted angle to E and beech hedge in lieu of wall to SE. Tall (18ft high) coursed whinstone and rubble walls with flat ashlar copes. Droved ashlar long and short quoins to doorways in NE and SW with raised plain margins. Turf surmounting most copes.

NE ELEVATION: slightly altered whinstone rubble wall of varying heights with former Gardener's Cottage (now tea room, listed separately) incorporated into angle at right; various entries into garden to centre including a doorway with long and short quoins and later timber boarded door; wall adjoining outbuildings and Garden Cottage (listed separately) to left.

NW (DRIVE) ELEVATION: tall coursed and random whinstone rubble kitchen-garden wall (around 18ft high) terminating in flat stone copes with entrance door way to left (lintel dated 1749); layer of turf surmounting full length of copes; arched W angle to wall. Small modern lean-to glasshouse near centre of inner wall.

SW ELEVATION: similar in height and style to NW wall with entrance doorway to left with long and short quoins and later timber boarded door.

INTERIOR: original ground plan and planting scheme now lost but now used for recreation (seating/picnic area); the display of a later 19th century pillar sundial (dial now missing) and modern sculpture and cast-iron fountain.

Statement of Interest

A-Group with Traquair House, Exedra, Bridge on East Drive, East Lodge, Tea room, Office, Craft Workshops, Summerhouse, Gardener's Cottage, Bear Gates and Avenuehead Cottages. The walled garden was added during the tenure of the Charles Stuart, 5th Earl of Traquair. He was a Jacobite and was imprisoned in the Tower of London following the 1745 uprising. He was released in 1748 and undertook substantial improvements on the Estate. He redecorated the main House and was responsible for the construction of many of the small estate building adjacent to this garden, as well as the lodges adjacent to the bear gates. He was also Factor of Traquair Estate during the latter years of his father, the 4th Earl's life and may have commissioned some of the work that was done in the earlier period. This garden was constructed to the south of the formal drive and was well used and had already been remodelled by the beginning of the 19th century. It is not known what originally stood on this site but a tree nursery was recorded at Traquair in 1709 and due to the nature of the site, this may have been where it was sited. The garden is walled on only 3 sides, the SE side being bounded by a beech hedge. Formerly a walk ran SE towards Hollilee Park, and it was here that the summerhouse (listed separately) was originally sited. In 1841, J.C. Loudon commented "We went through that curious old place, Traquair, where the kitchen-garden walls are 18ft high, and were coped with turf now bearing a rich crop of grass and weeds, the seeds of which were nearly ready for being distributed over the garden by the winds." The Gardener's Magazine of 1842 notes its tremendous fruit crops, particularly the strawberries. The 1st Edition OS map shows a quite detailed layout to the garden with a tree lined avenue bisecting the main area and smaller squared areas to the south, each surrounded by fruit trees. The 2nd Edition map shows a more open plan with fewer trees, but the central avenue remaining. The garden remained in estate use until 1938; in 1939 it was let as a market garden which ran successfully until the 1950?s where upon it was grassed. It is now open to the public with the former Gardener's Cottage now in use as the Tea Room (listed separately). The area nearest the tea room is in use for recreational purposes (picnic and seating area) whilst older fruit trees and a greenhouse can be found adjacent to the west wall. The pheasantry no longer exists, but was latterly used to rear trees for the estate (circa1987-1993). An incomplete 19th century sundial can also be found within the garden. The walled garden is listed due to its important role as an integral part of the development of Traquair Estate.

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