Edinburgh Today

Lauriston Castle

The Castle

Lauriston Castle is situated between Davidson's Mains and Cramond, about 4 mile NW of the centre of Edinburgh.  It has a croquet lawn that overlooks the Firth of Forth.

Lauriston Castle - 1775

Engraving from 'Old & New Edinburgh'  -  Lauriston Castle in 1775

Lauriston Castle consists of a four-storey Jacobean-style building by William Burn built in 1827 around an earlier tall tower (c.1590).  Some modifications were added in the 1840s and 1870s.

The building was gifted to the nation in 1926 and is now in the care of the City of Edinburgh Council.

Edinburgh: An illustrated Architectural Guide (Charles McKean)
The Buildings of Scotland - Edinburgh (John Gifford et al.)

In recent years (to 2005) the castle and its gardens have seen increased use, especially for events designed for families.

The Gardens

The Italian Flower garden at Lauriston Castle was commissioned by the owner, William Rutherford, an advocate, an Italian scholar and Member of Parliament  for Leith. 

The garden was created by the architect, William Playfair, in 1844. 

Playfair who designed the National Galleries, Donaldson's School, St Stephen's Church and other prominent buildings in Edinburgh was involved in adding gabled porches to the castle in 1845  when he was asked to design the garden.

Under a twinning scheme with Tuscany and Florence, the garden is now to be restored at a cost of 240,000.  It is to include new Italian-style gates, statues, urns and an Itallianate hedge.  The garden is expected to open in summer 2007.

The Italian Garden will become Lauriston' s second Friendship Garden.  The first Friendship Garden, a Japanese Garden opened in 2002.

Edinburgh Evening News,  November 18, 2005, p. 29



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