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Ruchlaw House

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Record Detail

  • Organisation
    RCAHMS
  • Alternative name(s)
    N/A
  • Canmore ID
    57835
  • Site type
    COUNTRY HOUSE
  • Parish
    WHITTINGEHAME
  • Council
    EAST LOTHIAN
  • NGR
    NT 61845 74121
  • Latitude, longitude
    55.958583N, 2.612684W
  • Archeological notes
    NT67SW 5.00 6183 7411 NT67SW 5.01 NT 618 740 Sundials NT67SW 5.02 NT 6180 7405 Garden House NT67SW 5.03 NT 6179 7412 Offices NT67SW 5.04 NT 618 741 Garden NT67SW 5.05 NT 61769 73922 Little Ruchlaw For Ruchlaw House, Dovecot, see NT67SW 4 (NT 6183 7411) Ruchlaw (NAT) OS 6" map (NG) Ruchlaw. On the left bank of the Sauchet Water, and less than 1/4 mile west of Stenton, village on the other bank, is the mansion of Ruchlaw, a 17th century house built by Archibald Sydserff and still occupied by his descendants. It is built on an L plan; the main block, 67 feet long by 21 feet broad, lying east and west and the wing, which contains a turnpike stair, projecting southward from the eastern end. The building is three storeys in height. The walls are built of a reddish rubble in courses and are covered with harling, but the plain backset dressed margins of the voids and the moulded Renaissance eaves course are left exposed; the gables are crowstepped. On a modern porch, which has been built out in the re-entering angle, are two carved and inscribed triangular pediment stones, which have been removed from some other portion of the building. The first has, beneath two stars, a shield charged: within a bordure a fleur-de-lys between three cinque-foils two and one. Flanking the shield are the initials A.S. for Archibald Sydserff, the founder, and the date 1663. The second pediment has a quaterfoiled ornament comprising four fleur-de-lys conjoined at the stalk, flanked by initials AS with initials ES below and the date 1663. Internally the house is modernised; the ground floor apartments were originally vauled but all the vaults except that of the eastern chamber have been removed. Several of the windows have heavily moulded cases and astragals which appear to ne of memel pine and contemporary with the house. The building is in good condition. Sundials - Within the walled garden south of the house are two sundials. The first is a 17th century lecturn dial 5 feet 8 inches high (fig. 83). The shaft is octagonal as plan and has a moulded necking, capital and base. The dial-stone is wrought into 35 dials; the gnoma have been of wrought iron and are completely oxidised. This dial is presumably not in situ having been re-erected in the 19th century (D MacGibbon and T Ross 1897). The second dial is later and less interesting. The dial stone is a small, flat slab of white marble, has a wrought iron gnomon, and is inset in a red freestone baluster, the total height being 3 1/2 feet. The marble slab bears an illegible inscription, usually taken to be Roughlaw. Historical Note. - William 'Sydserff' of Ruchlaw is on Record in 1623 (Reg Magni Sig Reg Scot); Mr James 'Sydserfe' of 'Rouchla' was in 1644, appointed to take control of the Whittinghame estates, (Reg Privy Cnl) and Archibald 'Sydserfe' of Ruchlaw (1666) was his son (Inquisit Special Haddington No.283). RCAHMS 1924, visited 1920 Ruchlaw is generally as described by the RCAHMS. The modern porch was removed about 1956 and only the pediment stone bearing the initials 'A S' remains, now above the new entrance. The 17th century sundial was destroyed about 1960 and a fragment built into the greenhouse at NT 6181 7404, while the second is still in situ at NT 6183 7406. Visited by OS (RD) 6 April 1966.
  • Architectural notes
    N/A

Related material information

PRINT ROOM

  • 57835 ()
    Postcard view of house. Insc: 'Ruchlaw House, East Lothian'
  • 57835 ()
    Page 87. View from N. PHOTOGRAPH ALBUM NO.78: MISS HILDA MAY DARLING'S COUNTRY HOUSE ALBUM
  • 57835 (1902)
    PHOTOGRAPH ALBUM NO.78: MISS HILDA MAY DARLING'S COUNTRY HOUSE ALBUM Miss Hilda May Darling of Priestlaw Duns personal collection of postcards, referred to in messages as 'your house book'. Contains postcards of Country Houses and Hotels from all over Scotland, the majority from East Lothian and Berwickshire. Arranged roughly chronologically from c.1902 to c.1930.

PRINTS AND DRAWINGS

  • 57835 (1948)
    Plans, sections and elevations showing details including boiler house, bathroom, doors, fireplaces, electrical installation.
  • 57835 (1948)
    Plans, sections and elevations showing alterations including sketches for preliminary schemes, details hot water installation and annotations relating to costs.

PHOTOGRAPHS

  • 57835 (17/6/1925)
    View from SW.
  • 57835 (17/2/2005)
    Oblique aerial view centred village with country house and walled garden adjacent, taken from the ENE.
  • 57835 (17/2/2005)
    Oblique aerial view centred village with country house and walled garden adjacent, taken from the E.
  • 57835 ()
    Detail of tympanum.
  • 57835 ()
    General view.
  • 57835 (1975)
    View from E.
  • 57835 (1975)
    View from W.
  • 57835 ()
    View from S.
  • 57835 ()
    View from SW.
  • 57835 (1975)
    View from W.
  • 57835 (1975)
    View from SE.
  • 57835 (1975)
    View from S.

SCANNED IMAGES

  • 968462 (17/2/2005)
    Oblique aerial view centred village with country house and walled garden adjacent, taken from the E.
  • 1127333 ()
    Detail of tympanum.
  • 1127331 ()
    General view.

MANUSCRIPTS

  • 57835 (1954)
    Newscuttings detailing the sale and demolition of various properties.

1st edition 6-inch maps

TitleDateOther parishes/counties
 Ordnance Survey six-inch to the mile, Haddingtonshire, Sheet 111853