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The Old School Including Boundary Walls

A Category C Listed Building in Ballater, Aberdeenshire

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Latitude: 57.0484 / 57°2'54"N

Longitude: -3.0452 / 3°2'42"W

OS Eastings: 336688

OS Northings: 795740

OS Grid: NO366957

Mapcode National: GBR WF.9XM7

Mapcode Global: WH7NL.635G

Plus Code: 9C9R2XX3+8W

Entry Name: The Old School Including Boundary Walls

Listing Name: School Lane, the Old School Including Boundary Walls and 6 Abergeldie Road

Listing Date: 14 November 2006

Category: C

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 399166

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB50650

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Ballater

County: Aberdeenshire

Town: Ballater

Electoral Ward: Aboyne, Upper Deeside and Donside

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire

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1877 (dated) with some 20th century additions. Single storey, irregular plan purpose-built former school and pair of schoolhouses. Coursed, pinned pink and grey granite. Base course. Raised coped skews and skewputts.

FURTHER DESCRIPTION: S (PRINCIPAL ELEVATION): schoolhouses to outer bays: that to left, 2-storey 3-bay with later single storey and attic to left; that to right, 2-storey 3-bay. Both with pedimented dormerheads breaking eaves and advanced gable. Schoolhouses linked by lower single storey 4-bay section forming boys' and girls' entrances with pair of entrance doors with pedimented gableheads breaking eaves and distinctive 9-pane glazed gently pointed fanlights.

Attached to rear right, orientated W-E, single storey 3-bay, gabled, gothic schoolroom with gabled bellcote and bell at mid roofline on E gable. Some bipartite and tripartite Y-tracery timber windows. Attached to rear left, 5-bay single storey classroom range with gothic window openings and pedimented gableheads breaking eaves.

Single storey linking corridor at rear to square double height classroom building with half-piended roof and large paired windows.

Diversity of window types. 4-pane timber sash and case windows to houses. Large, timber 6 over 9-pane sash and case windows to square classroom at N. Large, predominantly timber transomed and mullioned multi-paned fixed windows, some with top opening panes to other rooms. Grey slate. Gable and wallhead stacks with canted coping.

INTERIOR: extensively modernised. One double height classroom building with dado rail pine panelling.

BOUNDARY WALL: low, rubble granite to S with saddleback coping and interspersed with gabled piers. High, granite rubble to E and W with rubble saddleback coping.

Statement of Interest

A good example of a post 1872 Education Act school with the more rarely seen 2 schoolhouses and an unusual Gothic detailed classroom. Situated primarily in a residential area, the distinctive pedimented gableheads of the school provide an interesting and positive contribution to the local streetscape and it presents a particularly striking fa├žade to the South.

The 1872 Education (Scotland) Act made education compulsory for all children between 5 and 13, and local parish and burgh schools were taken over by the State and managed by locally elected School Boards. New, better equipped schools were built of which the one in Ballater is a fine example. Previously there had been two smaller schools in the town which this building replaced. The school served infants to mid teenagers and the building had clearly separated sections for boys and girls, each with their own entrance and playground. The house to the left of the main entrance was the infant headmistress's house, and the one to the right, for the headmaster. The headmaster also had a private garden in which some of the pupils used to learn gardening.

A new school was built in Ballater in the 1960s and the pupils were transferred. The building then served as an Outdoor Centre, but this use was discontinued in the 1990s and, with the exception of the former headmistress's house, which is a private residence, the school remains unused (2005).

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