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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
  • Group Category Details: A - see notes
  • Date Added: 14/07/1966


  • Local Authority: Edinburgh
  • Planning Authority: Edinburgh
  • Burgh: Edinburgh

National Grid Reference

  • NGRNT 25505 67628
  • Coordinates325505, 667628


Probably early 18th century. 2-storey, single cell, rectangular-plan tower incorporating pair of round angle towers to W. Symmetrical design incorporating classical motifs to W elevation, including oculus, round-arched window with keystone and miniature obelisks to either side of gable. Rubble (formerly harled) with lightly droved sandstone ashlar dressings, including architraved openings, coped gables and quoins.

W (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: central round-arched window with keystone and impost bands (formerly entrance or taller window) to ground floor; single window above; flanking angle towers to below gable height, each with single 1st floor window. Shouldered gable with oculus at centre and miniature flanking stone obelisks; chimney stack at apex surmounted by wrought-iron finial.

E (ENTRANCE) ELEVATION: central entrance with panelled timber door; paired windows to 1st floor.

N ELEVATION: round angle tower to right; 1st floor window immediately to left.

S ELEVATION: round angle tower to left; single window immediately to right to each floor (that to ground floor probably later with surround rather than architrave).

Grey slate roof to main body of structure; stone flags to angle towers. Multi-pane fixed timber windows (mainly 28 and 12-pane, largely broken). Coped gablehead stacks to E and W elevations; that to W elevation with ashlar angle margins and flat coping surmounted by wrought-iron finial; that to E elevation with stone quoins and moulded ashlar coping.

INTERIOR: former 1st floor and staircase missing.

Statement of Special Interest

A-group with Morton House and Morton House Pavilions, Entrance Gateway and Boundary Wall (see separate list entries), all of which are probably largely contemporary with the earlier section of the house. An unusual and intact belvedere built onto a rocky outcrop marking the highest point of the grounds of Morton House and offering extensive panoramic views of the surrounding land. Until the late 20th century it contained the remains of an upper floor and staircase (these were removed for safety). Timber panelling to the first floor room and painted plasterwork to the ground floor room were removed when it was used as an obervation post during World War I.



Appears on PLAN OF THE LANDS OF MORTON, THE PROPERTY OF RICHARD TROTTER ESQ, by Robert Bell, Surveyor, 1842; RCAHMS, INVENTORY OF THE ANCIENT AND HISTORICAL MONUMENTS OF THE CITY OF EDINBURGH (1951) p236; Sheila G Forman, A COUNTRY HOUSE WITHIN THE CITY BOUNDARIES in 'The Scotsman', Saturday 14 December 1957, p8; Charles J Smith, HISTORIC SOUTH EDINBURGH, VOL II (first published 1979, this edition 1982) pp387-89; John Gifford, Colin McWilliam and David Walker, EDINBURGH, in 'The Buildings of Scotland' series (first published 1984, this edition 1991) pp568-69.

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