Basic Site Details

Name: Skene House
City or county: Aberdeenshire
Country: Scotland
Parish: Skene
Grid ref:
Notes: Fountains and sculpture supplied by Austin & Seeley, artificial stone manufacturers. Magnificent interiors overseen by Lady Agnes Duff, perhaps following a scheme by David Ramsay Hay, under the guidance of her husband's uncle, James Duff, 4th Earl of Fife. 'Mr Begg' of Elgin was responsible for the painting and decorative work.

Building Type Classification

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


The following date-based events are associated with this building:
 FromToEvent typeNotes
Item 1 of 3c. 1745 Build/constructionBroader SE wing to balance NW wing
Item 2 of 31790 Addition 
Item 3 of 3c. 1847c. 1850Alterations and additionsDecorative schemes in SE wing carries out at this time.


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 5John AdamArchitectCc. 1745 Broader SE wing to balance NW wing
Item 2 of 5William AdamArchitectDc. 1745 May have been responsible for SE wing - or perhaps John Adam responsible
Item 3 of 5James PlayfairArchitectB1790 Additions for George Skene
Item 4 of 5Archibald SimpsonArchitectAc. 1847 Remodelling, completed by William Ramage who published a lithograph of the house
Item 5 of 5William RamageArchitectAc. 1847c. 1850Completion of Simpson's remodelling for the Earl of Fife


The following individuals or organisations have commissioned work on this building/design:
Item 1 of 3Duff, Lady AgnesInstructed and supervised the decoration of the apartments.
Item 2 of 3Fife, Earl ofRemodelling
Item 3 of 3Skene, George (late), Trustees ofClients for Archibald Simpson work


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this building:
Item 1 of 5APSD The Dictionary of Architectureed Wyatt PapworthThe Architectural Publication Society (8v 1852-1892)Under Archibald Simpson
Item 2 of 5Colvin, Howard2008A Biographical Dictionary of British Architects 1600-1840 London: YUP. 4th edition 
Item 3 of 5Giles Aberdeenshire CastlesLXXIV  
Item 4 of 5Notes and Queries    9 December 1908 (mention of set of drawings by Simpson)
Item 5 of 5Sharples, J, Walker, D W and Woodworth, M2015The Buildings of Scotland: Aberdeenshire South and Aberdeen London and New Haven: Yale University Presspp61, 715-7

Periodical References

The following periodicals contain references to this building:
 Periodical NameDateEditionPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 2Builder1847V p217
Item 2 of 2Country Life24 May 2001   

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this building:
 SourceArchive nameSource catalogue no.Notes
Item 1 of 4Historic Environment ScotlandListed Buildings Register16530 
Item 2 of 4NAS National Archives of ScotlandArchives prefixed CSCS 96/485pp193-4
Item 3 of 4National Archives of Scotland (formerly SRO)Register House Plans RHP 1132 (terraces and gardens)
Item 4 of 4National Library of Scotland Advocates ManuscriptsJames Playfair professional journal