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Listed Building

The legal part of the listing is the address/name of site only. All other information in the record is not statutory.


Status: Designated


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  • Category: A
  • Date Added: 22/02/1972


  • Local Authority: Moray
  • Planning Authority: Moray
  • Parish: Rathven

National Grid Reference

  • NGRNJ 44634 62300
  • Coordinates344634, 862300


Robert Adam, dated 1773. Tall centre 3-storey cube joined to

mirrored 2-storey outer wings by 3-bay linking blocks, the

mansion set on raised basement fully displayed as lower

ground floor at S garden front.

Pink tooled pinned granite centre block, harl pointed rubble

elsewhere, tooled and polished contrasting sandstone


N FRONT: N entrance front with outer mirrored wings set at

right angles to form shallow U-plan court. Centre entrance

with shallow portico supported by 2 Corinthian columns

approached by shallow flight of steps oversailing raised

basement. 3 console corniced windows with balustraded aprons

in 1st floor, smaller upper windows.

Outer wings each with single ground floor tripartite; each

set-back 3-bay linking block with advanced and pedimented

centre bay, at right with doorway. Raised basement screened

by continuous spearhead railings with urn finials to


S GARDEN FRONT: 5-window centre block with centre entrance to

basement and small flanking lights; blind window in centre of

upper storey with dated keystone.

Outer wings fronted E and W by centre 2-storey, single bay

projecting wing with piended roof, at W with entrance to

former chapel in lower ground floor.

Chapel has round-headed windows with intersecting astragals.

Decorative glazing to fanlights; 9- and 12-pane glazing;

coped end, wallhead and ridge stacks (single leaded dummy

ridge stack at E for symmetry). Centre cube with blocking

course and piended slate roof with centre ridge weathervane;

gabled slate roofs elsewhere.

INTERIOR: entrance hall from which rises full-height

cantilevered flight of stairs. Ground floor parlour and

dining room.

DINING ROOM: white marble chimneypiece; steel basket grate by

James Fraser, Banff; plaster ceiling and cornice; dado rail;

mahogany raised and fielded panelled doors and window

shutters; double doors to parlour.

1ST FLOOR DRAWING ROOM: room leads from spacious landing;

yellow and white marble chimneypiece; steel basket grate with

incised decoration, also by James Fraser, Banff (signed);

mahogany dado rail, raised and fielded panelled doors and

window shutters; decorative painted (green and white) plaster

ceiling; richly coloured hand painted wallpaper with birds

and flowers.

LIBRARY: modern shelving; re-used marble chimneypiece.

CHAPEL: groined plaster vaulted chancel flanked by engaged

pilasters. No fittings survive.

FOUNTAINS: shaped watergarden in front of S elevation; with 2

fountains of earlier-mid 19th century date. Both stand on

square plinths, their wide bowls with scalloped lips

supported by shaped baluster stems; the fountain furthest

from house has shaped central stem with diminishing basins.

Statement of Special Interest

Mansion built by 2 bachelor brothers (Gordon) who made their

money in Madeira in the wine trade. They sent home Spanish

mahogany which is in use in the principal public rooms.

Fine steel basket grates by James Fraser, Banff with unusual

features, the principal being the dummy decorated fronts

which pull away from the fire in order not to overheat and


The Gordons were a staunchy Roman Catholic family and built

their mansion at a time when public worship was proscribed

for Catholics. Above the chapel (no longer in use as such)

there was accommodation for a resident priest who also acted

as tutor to the children of later heirs.

Garden fountains appear on 1st ed. OS, circa 1870

S garden front basement may have been originally masked by

raised bank, lowered after re-design of garden and

installation of fountains.



THE STATISTICAL ACCOUNT (1792-3, Witherington and Grant ed.

1982), p.363. NEW STATISTICAL ACCOUNT (1842), p.255. Howard


1600-1840 (1978), p.54. National Monuments Record of

Scotland, Edinburgh and Soane Museum, London. Further

information by courtesy the present owners.

About Designations

Listed Buildings

We list buildings of special architectural or historic interest and these are selected according to criteria published in the, Annex 2, pp74-76.

The information in the listed building record gives an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building(s). It is not a definitive historical account or a complete description of the building(s). The format of the listed building record has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

Enquiries relating to works to listed buildings should be made to the local authority in the first instance. Listed building consent is required for works which a local authority considers will affect its character as a building of special architectural or historic interest and local authorities also decide if listed building consent is required.

Listing covers both the exterior and the interior. Listing can cover structures not mentioned which are part of the curtilage of the building, such as boundary walls, gates, gatepiers, ancillary buildings etc. The local authority is responsible for advising on what is covered by the listing including the curtilage of a listed building. For information about curtilage see

Legislation introduced on 1 October 2015 allows us to state that: an object or structure fixed to the listed building; any object or structure within the curtilage of the listed building; and, any part or feature of the listed building that is not of architectural or historic interest may be excluded from a listing. If part of your building is not listed under the new legislation, the part will be excluded in the statutory address and in the statement of special interest. The statement will use the word 'excluding' and quote the relevant section of the Historic Environment Scotland Act 2014. Some earlier listed building records may use the word 'excluding', but if the Act is not quoted, the record has not been revised to reflect current legislation.

Find out more about listing and our other designations at