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House Of Nairne

House (Period Unassigned)

Site Name House Of Nairne

Classification House (Period Unassigned)

Canmore ID 27035

Site Number NO03SE 4

NGR NO 0738 3284

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2021.

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Administrative Areas

  • Council Perth And Kinross
  • Parish Auchtergaven
  • Former Region Tayside
  • Former District Perth And Kinross
  • Former County Perthshire

Archaeology Notes

NO03SE 4 0738 3284.

(NO 0738 3284) House of Nairne (NR) (Site of)

OS 6" map (1959)

The House of Nairne was the principal residence of the Nairne family. The date of erection is not known, but it was destroyed by fire and replaced by another building of the 18th c. This latter was demolished after the Rebellion of 1745. There are no remains of either building.

New Statistical Account (NSA) 1845; Name Book 1864

No remains of a building were seen but there is a disturbed stony area immediately to the west which may contain debris from the site.

Visited by OS (WDJ) 10 March 1969.

Architecture Notes



House of Nairne.

1711. Lord Nairne to Breadalbane; Nairne 21st July, refers to building his house, but his brother's at Logereithe hinders for Carriage of timber. No.1425. Breadalbane SRO GD 112/39/9


Architect: Sir Wiiliam Bruce 1706-1709. (Burnt 1764).


Drawing in Tullibardine Room at Blair Castle, inscribed on back: 'The House of Nairne - of Strathard, built by William, Lord Nairne and destroyed by his nephew, James, Duke of Atholl'. 1747.

Copy of plan in Scottish Record Office. GD 112/40/7 with letter dated 1711 - plan of part of garden terrace.


Geophysical Survey (12 October 2008 - 14 October 2008)

NO 0750 3275 The House of Nairne at Loak, 9km N of Perth, was ‘one of the finest seats of the Scottish Nobility’. It was the last major design of Sir William Bruce (the King’s architect) and was constructed between c1706 and 1710. The owner, Lord Nairne was a staunch Jacobite and lost the estate after the 1745 rebellion. It was purchased by his cousin James Murray, the 2nd Duke of Atholl, who had no use for another large house. This combined with a possible desire to remove a Jacobite rallying point, led to Murray contracting George Sandeman of Perth to demolish the house and sell everything. This roup was carried out 1759 – 1764 and the

site was returned to farmland.

A visit showed that the location of the house marked on all editions of OS maps and in the RCAHMS records (NO

0738 3284) is undoubtedly wrong. The stone remains at this position, perched at the end of a narrow ridge above the Ordie burn, might be a tower or pavilion in the former gardens or even the site of the earlier 15th-century Nairne House destroyed by fire in 1704. However, there is not enough space for the huge house depicted in the only known representation drawn from memory by James Nairne some time during 1764–1770.

The Blair Atholl House Library was able to provide a copy of a map drawn by James Stobie as part of a farm

lease agreement in 1790 which shows the site of the former house some 200m to the SE of the OS position. This is on a broad plain about 100m wide and 300m long between the river and the ridge to the N, a much more likely situation. In favour of this site we can also note a large soil mark seen on the ‘Getmapping’ aerial photography, some rectangular looking cropmarks (RCAHMS photo E06841 30.07.2001) and a prominent terrace in the field.

A magnetic survey of 0.5ha was carried out over the terrace and surrounding area on 12–14 October 2008. This showed that an E/W metal water pipeline has been laid across the centre of the terrace. There are a few small linear anomalies which lie on the correct orientations to be part of the house complex. A resistivity survey and a resistivity profile carried out over these anomalies demonstrated corresponding resistivity changes but failed to provide convincing evidence for a building. It appears that George Sandeman did his job

too well.

Archive: RCAHMS (intended)

Funder: Perth and Kinross Heritage Trust

P Morris (Blairgowrie Geoscience), 2008


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