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Aberlour House (building)

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Dec 15, 2021

Aberlour House is a country house near Aberlour in Moray, Scotland. It was built in 1838 by William Robertson for Alexander Grant, planter and merchant from Aberlour, after his return to the UK. His niece, Margaret Macpherson Grant, lived in it after Grant died, and it was later home to John Ritchie Findlay of The Scotsman newspaper and his descendants. It was requisitioned for military use during the Second World War, and after the war was sold for use as a preparatory school for Gordonstoun. The school was later moved into Gordonstoun’s estate, and the building was sold to Walkers Shortbread, who restored and renovated it, and now use it as their head office. It has been designated a Category A listed building.

House in Scotland, UK
For the school named for this building, see Aberlour House (school).
Aberlour House
Type Country House
Location Near Aberlour, Moray
Coordinates

57°28′37″N3°12′12″W

Built 1858
Built for Alexander Grant
Architect William Robertson
Owner Walkers Shortbread
Former Listed Building – Category B
Designated 1972
Delisted 1987
Reference no. LB2349
Listed Building – Category A
Designated 1987
Reference no. LB2349

Location of the Aberlour House in Scotland

. . . Aberlour House (building) . . .

Aberlour House, the only country house that William Robertson built from scratch, has been described by Charles McKean and Walker and Woodworth as his “masterpiece”.[1][2] Its main block presents a two-storey, five bay north-facing frontage,[2] with a porte-cochère projecting from the central entrance supported by doric columns,[2] and with the outer two bays slightly advanced.[3] On the western flank, there is a bay window, and behind that a large single-storey wing;[2] on the east side, there is a two-storey, three-bay drawing room extension, continuous with the main frontage, similar in style to the original front but resulting in an asymmetrical appearance that Walker and Woodworth describe as being out of character with Robertson’s work.[2][3]

A low entrance hall leads into a large stair hall that extends to the full height of the building, with a cantilevered stairway with ionicnewel posts leading to the upper floor, and a coffered ceiling with gilded detailing.[2] Opposite the entrance hall is a drawing room, with an red marble chimneypiece that is original to the building.[2] To the north west is a wood-panelled library, originally the dining fool, also with a coffered ceiling, and a marble fireplace featuring religious scenes.[2] In the west wing is the cafeteria, which was originally a ballroom.[2]

The front hall of Aberlour House

. . . Aberlour House (building) . . .

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. . . Aberlour House (building) . . .