15 WOODHALL ROAD, ALLERMUIR, WITH BOUNDARY WALL AND GATE PIERS (Ref:29948)
This building is in the Edinburgh Council and the
It is a category A building and was listed on 14/12/1970.
Group Items: N/A,
Group Cat: N/A,
Map Ref: NT 2145 6885.
Sir Robert Rowand Anderson (for himself) 1879 with 1906 additions (see Notes). 2-storey and attic, asymmetrical Scots Jacobean house. Multi-gabled with crowsteps and tall stacks; single-storey balustraded entrance lobby to E; 2-storey canted bay to S. Bull-faced snecked sandstone, rake-jointed in some places, with polished ashlar dressings. Relieving arches above some windows on all elevations.
W (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: blind gable with gablehead stack to right. Slightly advanced, single-storey balustraded lobby to centre; timber panelled door in roll-moulded architrave frame; ADSIT DEUS carved into lintel. Chamfered leaded fanlight above lintel flanked by monogram RRA 1879, all within bracket-shaped roll-moulding; small dentiled pediment above. Tall window flanking door to left. String course and eaves cornice below balustrade. 3-storey gable rising behind lobby with tall staircase window and small window to gable apex. Bipartite piended-roof dormer to left; various single-storey offices below.
S (PRINCIPAL/GARDEN) ELEVATION: 4-bay; slightly advanced 2-bay gabled section to right with gablehead stack. 2-storey, piend-roofed canted bay to right, slightly corbelled out at first floor. Small off-centre window to attic of gable. Advanced corbelled window with piended dormer-roof breaking eaves at 1st floor to outer left. Regular fenestration in central bays.
E (SIDE) ELEVATION: slightly advanced shouldered stack to outer left. Large bracketed box window at 1st floor to centre (1920s addition); gable-headed dormer above. Slightly advanced gable to right; piend-roofed L-shaped service outshot to ground with timber panelled back door; 2 windows to outer right.
N ELEVATION: forward-facing gable to left; irregularly fenestrated with corbelled bipartite mullioned window at 1st floor; half glazed timber panelled back door to centre in roll-moulded surround with leaded fanlight above lintel. Service annex to right.
Predominantly 12-pane glazing in timber sash andcase windows. Cast-iron down-pipes with fairly plain hoppers. Tall corniced and coped stacks with decorative clay cans. Red tiled roof with red ridge tiles.
INTERIOR: large lobby panelled to dado with fully glazed inner door and black and white marble tiles. Inner and outer entrance halls fully panelled with Columbian pine; compartmented ceilings; corner fireplace to inner hall with roll-moulded stone chimney-piece and glazed display cupboard above. Morning room: cast-iron grate with decorative rondel, roll moulded red sandstone surround, timber mantelshelf and overmantel; flanking display shelves; all within timber panelled arched recess (see Notes). Dining Room fully panelled in Columbian pine; cross-beamed ceiling; canted window bay with shutters; moulded stone fireplace with tile insets and pedimented timber mantleshelf; small mirrored inset between scrolled brackets. Columbian pine staircase, panelled to dado with 2 arches at stair head; compartmented ceiling; turned baluster rails and carved hand-rail. Fully panelled landing. Upstairs drawing room fully panelled in Columbian pine with compartmented ceiling; white marble fire-surround with delft tile inset and dentiled timber mantelshelf; bevelled plate glass mirror above; canted bay window behind semicircular arch. Timber panelled doors throughout.
BOUNDARY WALL AND GATE PIERS: low ashlar-coped rubble boundary wall with pyramidal-capped ashlar gate piers. Plain wrought-iron gates.
A particularly interesting house with a magnificent and very well detailed interior. Sam McKinstry notes the similarity of this house to the East range of Pinkie House, Musselburgh. The fireplaces with (Delft) tile insets, moulded stone surrounds and timber mantelshelves are very similar to ones in various Old Town townhouses, such as Moubray House (seventeenth century). The fireplace recess in the Morning Room was originally flanked by bookcases, but they were allegedly moved to Anderson?s townhouse which was left to the RIAS in his Will. The Entrance Lobby and adjoining cloakroom were added by Anderson in 1906. The planning of the house is particularly significant, as it probably influenced the planning of a number of later Arts and Crafts houses in Colinton. The house is placed to the North of its site, so that the principal rooms, which are on the South, to get the full benefit of the sun and good views of the Pentland Hills, look over the main part of the garden. The entrance of the house is to the side, on the West elevation, the service rooms face North towards the road, and the bedrooms face East. This arrangement reflected contemporary notions of planning, and was not particularly innovative, but the influence of Rowand Anderson over many of the other architects who built houses in Colinton was very great (see below), and this arrangement where a house has its back to the road, and its principal elevation overlooking the garden is very common in Colinton.
Sir Robert Rowand Anderson was the one of the most eminent Edinburgh architect of his generation, and the first Scot to win the RIBA Gold Medal. Amongst his more famous buildings are The Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, Edinburgh University Medical School and The McEwan Hall, all in Edinburgh, and Mount Stuart on Bute, for the Marquis of Bute. The opening of the railway in 1874 made it inevitable that Colinton would become a commuter suburb, but Anderson was largely responsible for it becoming a fashionable suburb, as he was one of the first and principal feuers of land from James Gillespie's Hospital. He started in 1877, building the double villa at 11-13 Woodhall Road, then in 1879 he built Allermuir and 2 Barnshot Road, next door. In the 1880s and 1890s he built a number of houses at the Northern end of Barnshot Road, and also developed several more feus along Woodhall Road. Many of his former pupils and assistants also worked in Colinton. The most notable, and most prolific of these was Sir Robert Lorimer, who built at least 12 houses to the South of The Water of Leith, as well as Rustic Cottages and Laverockdale House on the North side. Other architects include Balfour Paul (Sir William Fraser Homes, 52 Spylaw Bank Road, Partner); William Kininmonth and Basil Spence (6 Castlelaw Road, assistants to Balfour Paul); Frank Simon and Alexander Hunter Crawford (Dunalistair, Dreghorn Loan, former assistants); Sydney Mitchell (St Cuthbert's Church, Dell Road, former pupil); A L McGibbon (5-17 Spylaw Street, former pupil); and James Jerdan & Son (houses in Spylaw Park, James Jerdan was a former assistant).
Appears on 1894 OS map. Dean of Guild plans for entrance lobby addition, August 1906. Gifford, McWilliam & Walker, BUILDINGS OF SCOTLAND: EDINBURGH (1988), p520. McKinstry, ROWAND ANDERSON (1991), p86-88. Glendinning, MacInnes & MacKechnie, A HISTORY OF SCOTTISH ARCHITECTURE, pp336-7.
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