Rosewell, Whitehill House
- HER number: MEL5275
- Site Name: Rosewell, Whitehill House
- Grid Reference: 329640 662010
- Civil Parish:
- Monument Type:
- Country House (19th Century, Post Medieval)
- Summary: Country house, built 1839-1844, later used as hospital
- Description: NT26SE 93 Centred on NT29640 62010
See also NT26SE 80 NT 2963 6218 St Joseph's Hospital, Bridge
NT26SE 82 NT 2922 6329 St Joseph's Hospital, Gates and Gate-Lodge
NT26SE 93.01 29925 61846 St Mary's Lodge
NT26SE 93.02 29581 61995 Former stables block
NT26SE 93.03 29642 61967 Chapel
NT26SE 93.04 29610 61950 Hospital Wards
NT26SE 93.05 29688 62004 Hospital Wards
Architect: William Burn 1839
Scottish Record Office:
GD152/53/4/27/2 & 3. Letter A Roos to Tyndall Bruce October 10 1843 'Had much to do at Whitehill in the way of garden with Mr Burn and Mr Ramsay. The grounds at Whitehill are not good'.
Whitehill. Account for glass supplied to Sir John Ramsay of Whitehill at Whitehill House.
It includes sums for new casements for the hall, for mending the room off the hall and the study for Sir John's own room, the stair, backstair, mid room, the next room, the bairns' room, the grieve's room, and the woman house. #22.18.0.
1690 GD 143/4/5/5
[? Whitehill] Account for lath and plasterwork and for supplying deals from William Clark, Wright, to Sir John Ramsay of Whitehill.
1697 GD 143/6/4/34
Building and repairing the house of Whitehill.
Extract Factory by John Ramsay of Whitehill appointing Thomas McGill, preacher of God's word, as factor during granter's absence from Scotland, to pursue various legal actions, to collect various rents and undertake other estate affairs, with advice of Mr James Ramsay, brother of granter, if he agrees to act with said Thomas to build and repair granter's house of Whythill......
20 June 1650 GD 143/Box 2/3/4
NMRS REPORT DATE: 22/04/2004 Historic Scotland Listed Building Ref: 1146/27/-
Historic Scotland Listed Building Description: William Burn 1839-1844; builder Lewis Alexander Wallace. John Devlin, 1935, red brick chapel and refectory adjoining to SE. English-Jacobean revival country house, comprising 2-storey, basement and attic, 8-bay, square-plan main block; single storey and attic, 7-bay stable and office court connected by 4-bay link to SW. Coursed, lightly stugged sandstone ashlar with polished architraved mullioned windows. Base course; moulded dividing band course; moulded eaves cornice; balustraded parapet; buckle quoins; crowstepped gables.
NW (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: near-symmetrical; single storey single bay, basket-arched porte-cochere advanced to 4th bay from right, each arch flanked by Tuscan columns; keystone to arches; simple frieze, moulded cornice, pierced strapwork parapet; small-pane windows with fishscale glazing to right and left returns. Architraved doorway reached by flight of steps; 2-leave panelled timber outer door; glazed panelled inner door. Canted window to centre of 1st floor, with strapwork parapet enclosing statue of Virgin Mary; curvilinear gable with carved shell surmounted by cross to apex, flanked by 2 carved unicorns supporting Ramsay family crests. Window to ground floor and basement of left and right returns. 2 flanking bays to left and right recessed; 2-light window flanked by single light window to ground and 1st floors, regular fenestration to basement. Bay to outer right advanced with 3-light windows to basement, ground floor, 1st floor and recessed attic floor flanked by square angle turrets; 3-storey tower to penultimate bay to left with 2-light windows to basement and ground floors; bowed 5-light oriel with panelled lintel and pierced strapwork parapet to 1st floor; 3-light window to each elevation of 2nd floor tower. 4-light window to basement; 4-light windows with panelled lintel to ground and 1st floors; 3 light window to gabled attic floor, flanked to left by square angle turret.
SW ELEVATION: predominantly obscured by link, stables and later additions and alterations (see below).
LINK: symmetrical, 4-bay; 2-pane sash and case window to each bay, breaking eaves with strapwork pediment.
STABLES: single storey, basement and attic to N, 2 storey and attic to S, 7-bay, courtyard-plan with later additions and alterations.
NW Elevation: infilled round-arch containing 2 windows to gabled centre bay; stepped hood mould surmounted by Ramsay family crest of unicorn's head and mullet, flanked by 2 urns. Regular fenestration to 3 bays to left; dormers to attic floor of 3rd bay from left and penultimate bay to left with strapwork gables; window to ground floor of 3rd bay from right, glazed panelled timber door to penultimate bay to right and bay to outer right both with gabled dormers above both at attic floor.
NE Elevation: asymmetrical; 4-bay; gabled bay to right, 3-light window to centre with hoodmould and Ramsay crest set in gablehead flanked by 2 square angle turrets; regular fenestration breaking eaves with strapwork pediments to remaining 3 bays; Link adjoining to outer left.
SW Elevation: asymmetrical; 7-bay; regular fenestration to ground floor; 6 irregularly placed boarded timber doors to basement floor; gabled dormers at 2 bays to outer right attic floor; gabled bay to outer left.
SE Elevation: asymmetrical; 2-storey and attic, 7-bay. 2-leaf boarded timber doors to 2nd, 3rd and 4th bays from left of ground floor, infilled openings to outer left, flat timber door to penultimate bay to right flanked by 2 glazed panels; irregular fenestration to 1st floor; 4 dormer windows to attic floor; gabled bay to outer left with red brick additions (see below). Gabled bay to outer right advanced with boarded timber door with 2-pane fanlight off-centre to right of ground floor; 3-light window with hoodmould and Ramsay family crest set in gablehead to 1st floor, flanked by square angle turrets. Brick additions adjoining to outer left (see below). Left return: 5-bay; basket-arched opening to outer left leading to servants court; lean-to addition to central bays of ground floor, panelled timber door to bay to outer left reached by downward steps; 3 windows above archway; gabled dormers to remaining bays of 1st floor.
STABLE COURT: gabled infilled round arch to SE Elevation, flanked to right by 20th century lean-to addition; window to flanking bay to left; 2 gabled dormers to attic floor. Regular fenestration to all but door in penultimate bay to left of SW elevation; 2 gabled dormers to attic floor; basket arches of former coach houses obscured by glazed 20th century lean-to addition to NW elevation, 2 gabled dormers to centre of attic floor; flat roofed 20th century addition to ground floor of NE elevation, 2 gabled dormers to attic floor.
SERVANTS' COURT: to SE of Stable Court. Square-plan with additions and alterations.
NW Elevation: asymmetrical; 4-bay; regular fenestration to ground floor and 1st floor of 3 bays to right; window to ground and 1st floors of bowed angle bay to left.
NE Elevation: asymmetrical; 4-bay; regular fenestration to ground floor; window to outer right, penultimate bay to left and outer left of 1st floor; 2-light window sent in gablehead of attic storey to outer left; window to right return.
SE Elevation: asymmetrical; 3-bay; basket-arched opening with boarded timber door to bay to centre of ground; door to bay to left flanked to right by 6-pane window; single storey angle bowed window to bay to right. 3 windows to centre of 1st floor; replacement tripartite window to bay to left.
SW Elevation: asymmetrical; 3-bay. Panelled timber door flanked by 2 vertical 4-pane windows to centre of ground floor; basket-arched opening with panelled timber doors; angle bowed window to bay to left (see above). Regular fenestration to 1st and 2nd floor of tall bay to right; window set in gable of attic storey with bell below; 4 tripartite window to 20th century 1st floor of 2 bays to left.
SE ELEVATION: near-symmetrical; 7-bay; 8-light shaped bow window through basement, ground and 1st floors with panelled lintels; flanked to left and right by 3-light windows at ground floor, harled additions to basement floor; door and metal fire escape stair to 1st floor and attic floor of flanking bay to left; 3-light window to 1st floor of flanking bay to right. 3-storey, ogee roofed towers to penultimate bays to left and right with single light windows with strapwork pediments to ground and 1st floors of tower to left and 1st floor of tower to right, doorway (obscured by 20th century additions) to ground floor of tower to right; 3-light windows to each elevation of 2nd floor of towers. Gabled bays to outer left and right with canted windows through basement, ground and 1st floors; square angle turrets (ogee caps missing). Red brick addition adjoining to outer left (see below).
NE ELEVATION: near-symmetrical; 7-bay. 11-light shaped bow window with strapwork parapet to centre of ground floor; regular fenestration to 5 central bays of 1st floor expect bay to right with door and metal fire escape to ground at attic floors. 2-leaf glazed timber doorway to basement floor of penultimate bay to right. 5-light canted windows with strapwork parapets though ground and 1st floors of gabled bays to outer left and right. Gabled dormers to each of 5 central bays at attic floor; 3-light windows to flanking bays to outer left and right; square angle turrets (ogee caps missing).
BRICK ADDITIONS: John Devlin, 1935. Red brick additions adjoining house to SE, including apsidal ended chapel with round-arched stained glass windows. Regular fenestration to remainder; glazed flat-roofed addition to SW.
Variety of glazing patterns to timber sash and case windows. Graded grey slate roof with lead ridges. Barley sugar clustered, corniced ridge and wallhead stacks. Cast-iron rainwater goods.
INTERIOR: large Jacobean hall, elaborate stone chimney-piece and overmantle, U-plan timber stair with barley sugar balusters, large stained glass window; coved coffered ceiling with carved plaster masks to angles. Principal rooms, to NE of ground floor, and former bedrooms to SE of ground floor, ceilings replaced with suspended ceilings, fireplaces and one deep frieze survives. Double panelled timber doors and surrounds to ground floor. Simple rooms to upper storeys.
Chapel: rectangular-plan with gallery to rear; segmetally-arched with simple timber pews, timber panelling up to base of windows; round arch leads to octagonal-ended chancel.
Historic Scotland Listed Building Notes: B-Group with Bridge to N and Gatepiers and Gates Whitehill House, described in the NSA as a building "of noble dimensions and strikingly elegant appearance" (p612), was the principal mansion in Carrington Parish. It was designed for Major R G Wardlaw-Ramsay. The once white stone has now weathered grey. The garden, which is now much altered, was designed by Alexander Roos. Robert Ramsay of Swynisdene, son of Sir Alexander Ramsay of Dalhousie, founded the Whitehill family in the 16th century long before the present house was built, replacing an older structure (no records of which appear to survive). The present house was used as a Red Cross hospital in 1914, and in 1924 was taken on by the Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul and was a hospital until summer 1998 when it was sold.
Historic Scotland Listed Building References: J Blaeu, MAP OF LOTHIAN & LINLITHQUO, (1654); Scottish Record Office, ACCOUNTS, ESTIMATES & OTHER PAPERS DEALING WITH BUILDING WORK, CONSTRUCTION & REPAIRS, & C. CONNECTED WITH WHITEHILL, (1839-47), NRA(S) - Section 2 (Title Deeds), 8 G(1); THE NEW STATISTICAL ACCOUNT OF SCOTLAND, Vol 1, (1845), p612-613; 1st (1852) AND 2nd (1892) EDITION OS MAPS; F H Groome, ORDNANCE GAZETTEER OF SCOTLAND, (1885), Vol 1, p242; A Fraser, MIDLOTHIAN: A BRIEF ACCOUNT OF THE HISOTRY OF THE DISTRICT, (1955), p34; A Fraser, AFOOT IN MIDLOTHIAN, (1955), p12; D Walker, "William Burn: the country house in transition", SEVEN VICTORIAN ARCHITECTS, (J Fawcett (ed), 1976), p11, 26; C McWilliam, THE BUILDINGS OF LOTHIAN EXCEPT EDINBURGH, (1978), p421-422, fig.92; H Kirkland (ed), THE THIRD STATISTICAL ACCOUNT OF SCOTLAND: THE COUNTY OF MIDLOTHIAN, (1985), p196; J Thomas, MIDLOTHIAN: AN ILLUSTRATED ARCHITECTURAL GUIDE, (RIAS), (1995), p50-51.
- For more information contact: MidLothian Council HER
- Related Places:
- Associated Periods:
- Bibliographic reference: Views in the Lothians. 'Views in the Lothians', p.65. 67.
- Bibliographic reference: Small, J. 1883a. The castles and mansions of the Lothians.
- Bibliographic reference: Burke, J B. 1854. A visitation of the seats and arms of the noblemen and gentlemen of Great Britain and Ireland.