Kilmacolm, Balrossie School

© Copyright and database right 2015. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100020548.

Alternative Names Sailors' Orphans' Homes; Sailors' Orphans' Society Of Scotland
Canmore ID 267749
Site Number NS36NW 74
NGR NS 34260 69238
Former District INVERCLYDE
Datum OSGB36 - NGR

Canmore Mapping
View this site on a map

Architectural Notes

NS36NW 74.00 34260 69238

NS36NW 74.01 34248 69286 Annex
NS36NW 74.02 34184 69246 Ornamental Building
NS36NW 74.03 34224 69215 Ancillary Building

Notes and Activities Click to sort results by Event date ascending
22 July 2004

Project Buildings at Risk Register BARR

Notes 2-storey, roughly rectangular, Scottish Renaissance orphanage with gothic details. Piended roof with prominent gabled section to centre. Stepped principal frontage with towers, gable, oriel window and buttresses; 2 single-storey service wings extending from rear; bay windows to side elevations. Roughcast render over whinstone rubble with painted red sandstone ashlar dressings. Base course; deep bracketed eaves. Raised long and short quoins and window margins; predominantly stone-mullioned bipartite windows.

Built as an orphanage by the Sailors´ Orphans Society of Scotland. This was the first orphanage to be built by the society, and previous to its completion the society had housed its orphans in rented accommodation. Money for the building was donated by ´several donors´, including one anonymous benefactor who gave £3500: the deliberately obscure inscriptions on the Girls´ Villa and garden building are probably the monogram of this person. The architect of the building is given in the Glasgow Advertiser article as H and D Barclay, but as Hugh Barclay died in 1892, this is probably the sole work of his younger brother David. The Barclay brothers specialised in school design, and were responsible for a large number of schools in and around Glasgow, including Glasgow Academy; their most prominent building, however, was Greenock Municipal Buildings.

The orphanage was designed to house 82 boys and 32 girls. The principle building contained accommodation for 50 boys in the left wing and 32 boys in the right wing, each wing forming a separate house with its own dormitories, dining room, playshed and other accommodation. The central tower contained administrative offices, with stores on the ground floor and a water tank at the top. The large gabled section that runs through the centre of the block contained a large hall for assemblies, services, teaching, and other similar activities. Girls were housed separately in the villa to the North of the main building.

The exact purpose of the ornamental square building in the garden is unknown. It appears from the stonework that the roof of this building has been raised at some point. (Historic Scotland)

BARR website

Further details

Books and References

Walker, F A (1986b) The South Clyde estuary: an illustrated architectural guide to Inverclyde and Renfrew, Edinburgh
Page(s): 88 Held at RCAHMS D.5.RE 3

Showing 1 from 1
Charity SC026749