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Gatepiers, Lochbank

A Category B Listed Building in Castle Douglas, Dumfries and Galloway

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Latitude: 54.9296 / 54°55'46"N

Longitude: -3.9372 / 3°56'13"W

OS Eastings: 275965

OS Northings: 561156

OS Grid: NX759611

Mapcode National: GBR 0CYF.DN

Mapcode Global: WH4W0.HCC6

Plus Code: 9C6RW3H7+V4

Entry Name: Gatepiers, Lochbank

Listing Name: Lochbank with Gatepiers and Boundary Walls

Listing Date: 23 May 2005

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 398007

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB50124

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Castle Douglas

County: Dumfries and Galloway

Town: Castle Douglas

Electoral Ward: Castle Douglas and Crocketford

Traditional County: Kirkcudbrightshire

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Castle Douglas


1784-85, with 19th century additions and alterations. 2-storey, attic and cellar house with decorative Regency porch sited on W banks of Carlingwark Loch. Originally 3-bay, extended to NE with lower 2-storey service wing and to SW with 2-storey drawing room extension. Stair tower, later water tower and ancillary outbuildings to rear (NW). Painted harl with painted ashlar dressings and quoin strips. Base course, eaves course. Fine curving boundary wall.

PRINCIPAL (SE) ELEVATION: slightly advanced centre bay to 3-bay 18th century house. Early 19th century segmental bowed porch to centre with flagstoned segmental plinth, stone steps, plain iron railings and latticed iron pilasters and pelmet, swept lead roof. Tripartite doorway within, dividing colonettes, panelled aprons to sidelights, panelled door, sunburst fanlight with metope and triglyph surround. Single window above and later stone mullioned bipartite flanking. Drawing Room extension slightly recessed to outer left with projecting 4-light corniced window and 2 single windows above. Recessed service wing to outer right with 2-bay windowed gable breaking eaves.

REAR (NW) ELEVATION: piend-roofed stair tower to original centre with lean-to addition in re-entrant formed with piend-roofed former water tower, projecting service gable and further ancillary range and to N.

Timber sash and case windows predominantly with 4-pane glazing patterns (with horns, many good quality replacements). Broad coped stone wallhead stack to original SW side elevation; more slender stacks to gableheads of later additions. Graded grey slates, Lancashire to rear. Piended roof to original house, gabled to 19th century additions. Cast-iron guttering with some funnel water hoppers.

INTERIOR: excellent decorative detailing to interior, much 19th century. Plan single pile with corridor to rear to both floors. Suggestion that focus of house has been turned around to face loch, stair tower introduced and presumably plan form changed to accommodate, causing much decorative work to date to 19th century alterations. Fine plasterwork to cornicing, shouldered, decorative archways and ceiling rose. Notable chimneypieces including 1 from Lion's Club, Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, 1800s, and further 'Adam' and classical timber and marble chimneypieces throughout, 1 with tablet depicting stone masons at work. Carved timber stair. Round archways into corridor off 1st floor landing. Fine run of linen cupboards at 1st floor. Panelled doors, panelled shutters. Cellarage.

BOUNDARY WALLS, GATEPIERS: long run of curving harl pointed rubble whinstone walls, sandstone coped, lining roadside to N, dating to late 18th or early 19th century with some later minor realignment, running from NE of house to SW continuing around former lodge, Littlebank (see separate lisitng), and along road to Threave, bordering Gallows Slot (see Notes), and to shore of Loch to N. Fine pair of sandstone gatepiers, corniced with ball finials to head of drive (re-sited). Other plain sandstone piers and pedestrian vehicular gateways.

Statement of Interest

The fine porch, interior decoration, extensive boundary wall former lodge (see separate entry for Littlebank) and history of Lochbank qualify it clearly for the designation of listing. It was built for Mr Hannay on land acquired from William Douglas in 1784. Legal paperwork exists showing Hannay in occupation by 1785. Carlingwark Loch was partially drained in 1765 on the discovery of marl, a calcareous fertiliser of great value at the time to the improving landlords of Galloway as a boost to ceral crop production. A canal was opened up between the River Dee and Carlingwark to serve what developed into an industry for a while. The house passed from the Hannays to the Liddesdales in the 19th century who added the drawing room 'wing', presumably among other alterations such as turning the house around to face the loch., and it was still in their hands in 1881 (Census). Before the First World War it was acquired by the Skirvings whose son was an early flyer (POD 1924-7, Mrs J S Skirving). It then passed to a Miss Mackenzie who held the house until it was taken over for wartime occupation by the army in the Second World War when it served as the Commando HQ from which the St Nazaire raid was planned and executed.

The Gallows Slot marked on maps at the S end of the wall, was apparently the site where 'the victims of feudal tyrrany were tortured or executed' (Groome) but no tangible evidence remains extant.

Previously listed, delisted on resurvey April 1990. Re-appraised 2005.

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