Basic Site Details

Name: Fothringham House
Town, district or village: Forfar
City or county: Angus
Country: Scotland
Status: Demolished
Grid ref:
Notes: The youthful proprietor of the Fotheringham estates, T. F. S. Fotheringham, Esq., has lately commenced the erection, on his domain, of a splendid mansion-house, which, when completed, will form one of the most prominent ornaments of that district of Forfarshire. The new castle is being built on the site on which formerly stood the old mansion-house, the greater part of which has already been pulled down to make way for it, and the portion still remaining, which is principally occupied as dwelling accommodation by the superintendents of the works, will have to be removed as the new building advances. It is only those who have seen the old house, with its plainness almost amounting to deformity, who can realise the great improvement which will be made on the appearance of the estate by the new erection. Instead of the insignificant front, and plain two-story building which formerly existed, there will in future be one of the finest specimens of the old baronial style of architecture which can be seen anywhere in Scotland. This mansion, also, will appear far more in keeping than the former one with the fine extensive buildings which lie on the estate of Fotheringham. The new building, as we have mentioned, is to be in the baronial style of architecture, and the plan is full of those studied inequalities and quaint designs which are one of the charms of that style. The main front is to the northward, and in the centre of it is the principal entrance to the building, placed in a projecting gable, 18 feet in breadth. The door is reached by a few steps, and on each side are pillars of highly ornamented stone-work. At the top, also, is to be placed a mass of scrool-work in stone, which encloses a large tablet, on which the arms of the family or an inscription may be placed. In a smaller stone above this is the initials of the lord of the hall. Above this is a large oriel window, supported on stone corbelling, terminating in a grotesque figure, several of which are placed at the angles of the window. This gable rises to a height of 70 or 80 feet; and, entering by the doorway, the visitor is led into a large entrance-hall, on the right of which is placed the billiard-room, and on the left a business-room. The . other parts of the building are mostly devoted to the usual domestic purposes. On the right of the entrance is continued the line of the main building, which terminates on the right by a wing, projecting 29 feet, and ornamented with various turrets, also supported on corbelling. On the left of the main entrance is carried a line of building in which are offices of various kinds. The whole length of the building, from the right wing to the extremity of these offices, is about 200 feet ; and the breadth, from the north to the south fronts, is 108 feet. The front to the south has more the appearance of a modern villa. The entrance here, which is placed on the principal floor, is reached by a series of terraced step. From this entrance the library is immediately reached, on either side of which are the drawing and dining-rooms, both spacious apartments, and having bay windows of large size facing the lawn. The gables on this side the house are of a peaked form, and the sides are out in the style known as "crow steps." At the angles of the building, as in the main front, are placed turrets, supported on stone corbels. The east and west sides do not call for special notice, but in the centre of the building is a square tower, flanked by a conical-shaped turret, and rising to a height of about 100 feet ; on the top of the tower is an enclosed walls, from which a splendid view of the surrounding country will, no doubt, be obtained. The ridges on the roof are all to lie of stone, and will be studded with stone finials. In the interior of the mansion, we need hardly say, there will be provided every convenience which is required in an establishment of such magnitude.

The designer of this building is Mr. Bryce, architect, Edinburgh. The contractors for the mason work, Messrs. Hall, builders, Galashiels, expect that their department of the work will be finished this year, and the roofing commenced; and it is anticipated that occupation may be had of the west wing next year. The contract, however, extends until April, 1863, and it will be at least that time before every part of it is completed and ready for occupancy. The joiner-work is contracted for by Mr. Murray, Perth. The stone of which it is being built is a fine, hard freestone, obtained principally from the quarries near Tealing.—Dundee Advertiser.
[Building News 30 August 1861 pp710-711]

Alternative Names

The following alternative names are associated with this building/design:
 NameCurrent name?Notes
Item 1 of 1FotheringhamYes 

Building Type Classification

The building is classified under the following categories:
 ClassificationOriginal classification?Notes
Item 1 of 1Country House  


The following date-based events are associated with this building:
 FromToEvent typeNotes
Item 1 of 218591863Build/construction 
Item 2 of 21953 Demolition 


Design and Construction

The following individuals or organisations have carried out design/construction work. Where architects or practices worked together, matching letters appear beside their names in the Partnership Group column.
 NameRolePartnership GroupFromToNotes
Item 1 of 1David BryceArchitect 1859  


The following individuals or organisations have commissioned work on this building/design:
Item 1 of 1Fothringham, Thomas F S 


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this building:
Item 1 of 2Groome, Francis H Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland (1882-85) Edinburgh, London & Glasgow: Thomas C Jack, Grange Publishing Works 
Item 2 of 2RSA1862   717

Periodical References

The following periodicals contain references to this building:
 Periodical NameDateEditionPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 2Builder27 May 1876XXXIV Obituary of David Bryce
Item 2 of 2Building News30 August 1861VII pp710-711

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this building:
 SourceArchive nameSource catalogue no.Notes
Item 1 of 1Fothringham House, ForfarFothringham House Archives Letters, accounts and drawings