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Latitude: 56.0844 / 56°5'3"N
Longitude: -4.5383 / 4°32'17"W
OS Eastings: 242149
OS Northings: 690863
OS Grid: NS421908
Mapcode National: GBR 0N.NLFL
Mapcode Global: WH3MZ.8B4F
Plus Code: 9C8Q3FM6+QM
Entry Name: Balmaha, Nos 1, 2, and 3 Montrose House (Formerly Known As Montrose Home)
Listing Date: 4 May 2006
Source: Historic Scotland
Source ID: 398481
Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB50451
Building Class: Cultural
Electoral Ward: Forth and Endrick
Traditional County: Stirlingshire
Loch Lomond And Trossachs National Park Planning Authority
Montrose House built circa 1891 and designed by Robert Bryden, is a square-plan villa, single storey with attic breaking the eaves, with a single storey service wing. It was commissioned by the Duchess of Montrose as a holiday home for underprivileged children from Glasgow. Located on an elevated site at the heart of Balmaha, it was subdivided into 3 flats in the late 20th century. It contributes to the streetscape of Balmaha, and is of historical significance and interest as a philanthropic building.
A fairly restrained treatment of the ground floor, with a chamfered base course, mullioned double windows and a string course above, is balanced by a steeply pitched roof enlivened by gable-roofed dormers breaking the broad bracketed eaves. The 3-bay (S) entrance front has a central timber-panelled door with moulded door surround, and the left bay is slightly advanced with a steeply piended roof, as is the left bay of the side (E) elevation. To the (W) side, out of sight of the approach to the house, is a single storey former service wing. The rear (N) elevation has a central door (non traditional) flanked by advanced piend-roofed bays with dormer headed windows to 1st floor, and the service wing to the right.
Some original joinery to Flat 1. Access to flats 2 and 3 not gained 2004.
Snecked bullfaced red sandstone; rubble whin with sandstone margins to rear. Non-traditional timber and uPVC window. Piended roofs; graded slates; terracotta ridge tiles and finials. Corniced sandstone ridge stacks.
The original ground floor layout of the house included a large playroom and adjoining dining room, with interconnecting doors which allow them to be combined into one large room if necessary. On this floor there was also a matron's room, maid's room, kitchen and a bathroom. There was direct access from the play room to an outdoor playshed. The house accommodated up to 30 children at any one time; they slept in one of four dormitory rooms upstairs, where there was also the matron's bedroom and a small sick-room.
To the rear of the house was a single storey range of offices, now demolished.
The home was established by the Duchess of Montrose, who was inspired by the work of the Glasgow-based Fresh-Air Fortnight Society, which arranged for city children to be placed with host families in the country. Perhaps influenced by the idea of the philanthropic Quarrier's Village (a village in Renfrewshire established by William Quarrier in 1878 to rehome poor orphan children), the Duchess proposed that, rather than being placed in individual homes, the children might benefit from being lodged in a purpose built institution. The land was donated by the Duke of Montrose and subscriptions gathered to fund the building. Robert Bryden was no doubt selected to be the architect because, having previously designed Quarriers, he had proven experience of designing buildings for philanthropic use.
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