Major programme of restoration and repair proposed for Rosslyn Castle

A major programme of restoration and repair at Rosslyn Castle is being proposed.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 14th September 2021, 6:24 pm
Updated Tuesday, 14th September 2021, 6:24 pm
The East Range at Rosslyn Castle showing the unroofed area
The East Range at Rosslyn Castle showing the unroofed area

Applications for planning, listed building and scheduled monument consent have been submitted to Midlothian Council and Historic Environment Scotland by Rosslyn Chapel Trust.

Rosslyn Castle was built by the St Clair family and the oldest parts date back to the early 14th century.

Although much of the site is ruinous, the East Range, developed as a domestic residence and completed in 1622, is still partly occupied and let as holiday accommodation.

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However, the former great hall and tower, have remained in a ruinous state, leading to further deterioration including to the three levels of vaults below ground level.

The programme of work seeks to reintegrate the ruinous and habitable parts of the East Range to secure its long-term future.

Following a study to determine the best approach to consolidation and protection of the vulnerable masonry, it was concluded that a permanent roof would be the most sustainable and appropriate approach.

This would cover the former great hall, to protect important masonry carvings, and the three levels of vaults below, allowing a new kitchen and living area to be created at ground level and an additional bedroom to be located in the former tower.

Other works include comprehensive fabric repairs, particularly to the south elevation, where the sandstone directly under the ruined part of the great hall suffers significantly from a lack of pointing and masonry erosion, and proposals to upgrade the energy efficiency of the whole building and the development of a new sustainable heating strategy.

Rosslyn Chapel Trust has commissioned Page\Park as architects to develop the proposals.

Ian Gardner, director of Rosslyn Chapel Trust, said: “This proposed project will help to prevent the further deterioration of important parts of the castle’s East Range, both above and below ground, which have suffered from continuous water ingress over centuries.

"It will also improve the quality of the experience for guests staying here and secure the long-term future of one of Midlothian’s most historically significant buildings.”