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Boundary Walls

A Category C Listed Building in Galashiels, Scottish Borders

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Latitude: 55.6151 / 55°36'54"N

Longitude: -2.7982 / 2°47'53"W

OS Eastings: 349822

OS Northings: 636011

OS Grid: NT498360

Mapcode National: GBR 83XH.0Z

Mapcode Global: WH7WN.Z4P7

Plus Code: 9C7VJ682+2P

Entry Name: Boundary Walls

Listing Name: Melrose Road, Thorniedean House Including Boundary Walls, Railings and Gatepiers

Listing Date: 30 March 2006

Category: C

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 399246

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB50710

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Galashiels

County: Scottish Borders

Town: Galashiels

Electoral Ward: Galashiels and District

Traditional County: Roxburghshire

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c1868 with later additions. 2-storey and attic over basement, 4-bay extensive L-plan villa. Prominent bargeboarded gabled bay and turret-roofed canted bay. Squared rusticated buff sandstone with smooth ashlar dressings. Base course, band course at first floor level. Corbelled stack to SE wall, Mullioned and transomed windows to sides and rear. Chamfered surrounds.

GARDEN (SW) ELEVATION: asymmetrical. Canted bay to outer left. 3-storey bargeboarded gable-fronted bay to outer right with chamfered corners and tripartite windows. Tripartite pedimented timber-fronted dormers.

ENTRANCE (NE) ELEVATION: projecting ashlar doorway in re-entrant angle. Irregular fenestration; tripartite and quadripartite mullioned and transomed windows. Prominent stair window. Projecting service block on north corner.

Predominantly plate-glass timber sash and case windows, with some fixed light stained glass windows to entrance elevation and multi-pane upper lights to dormers. Purple slate piended roof with clay ridges. Corniced ashlar wallhead stacks; corbelled projecting stack on SW elevation.

INTERIOR: much of decorative scheme has survived in good condition (2005). Formal entrance hall, panelled to dado height, with elaborate canopied timber chimneypiece and Gothic stair arcade, also featured in upper stair. Balustraded stair of turned balusters and elaborate fretwork, with carved foliate newels. Geometric stained glass stair window with figurative painting. Several rooms retain elaborate plaster cornices, many above later ceilings. Principal dining room has trefoil-headed windows, with geometric stained glass. Panelled timber doors throughout.

BOUNDARY WALLS, RAILINGS AND GATEPIERS: squared sandstone and whin rubble boundary walls with ashlar copes. Decorative wrought iron railings. Octagonal gatepiers with bellcast capstones.

Statement of Interest

Thorniedean House is a notable large villa, of particular interest for the quality of its interior. The house, built as one of a series of exceptional mill-owners houses in Galashiels, has an important connection to the industrial heritage of the town. Although the house has had a variety of uses through the 20th century, the notable decorative scheme of the reception area has remained largely intact.

Melrose Road began to develop slowly from the later 19th century, with a series of villas built along the road as far as the burgh boundary. Thorniedean House was built for William Sime, of Sime and Sanderson, the original owners of Botany Mill.

The house appears to have been altered in the late 19th century. This work involved the addition of the 3-storey square bay on the front elevation, the addition of a third floor in the roofspace, including a billiard room in the east corner

The north wing, also an addition of the late 19th century appears to have been used as a service wing, with further services, probably stables, in the north corner. Very little remains of what appears to have been informal gardens, as most of the area is now occupied by Borders College buildings.

Thorniedean House became part of Galashiels Academy in 1949, after having been used by a girls school evacuated from Edinburgh during the war. The house later passed to Borders College for use as offices, converted in 1964 by architects Scott and Mackintosh.

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