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Edinburgh, New Town, General

General View

Site Name Edinburgh, New Town, General

Classification General View

Canmore ID 52202

Site Number NT27SE 181

NGR NT 2500 7400

NGR Description From NT 24 73 to NT 25 74

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Edinburgh, City Of
  • Parish Edinburgh (Edinburgh, City Of)
  • Former Region Lothian
  • Former District City Of Edinburgh
  • Former County Midlothian

Architecture Notes

ARCHITECT: James Craig, 1767 - layout of first New Town.


National Archives of Scotland

Proposal to build a new square.

James Playfair considers plans for the New Town are very defective. He wishws to put forward a design for a good general elevation and improved plans for the insides of houses, 1790. Letter. GD 151/11/32

Building of New Town.

' have a chance of seeing some of them who will tell you how wonderfully the building goes on, you will scarce find your way in this town...'

Letter from Margaret Grant to Lady Pitcalnie, 1788 GD 199/88



City Architects Plan Store.

Drawer No.31:-

No.49. Original elevation for the South and North sides of Drummond Place, in monotone. Scale 1 1/8 inch to 10 feet. Signed by Robert Reid, Edinburgh, March, 1840.

No. 48. Original elevation of the West side of Drummond Place, shewing the opening og Great King Street, with a perspective view of that street and the vista closed by a church, never erected, in Royal Circus. Scale 1 1/8" to 10 feet. SIgned by Robert Reid, Architect, 1804. In montone.

No.45. Original elevation of the buildings on London Street, in monotone, refered to in Articles of Foup of 1807. Scale 1 1/8 inch to 10 feet. Signed by Robert Reid, Archt. at Edinburgh, March 1806.

No.56. Original elevation of East division of Great King Street, in monotone. This drawing has been trimmed, scale signature and date have been ruthlessly cut away, but the drawing is to the same scale as the three last, and is quite evidently by Robert Reid. May be around 1804 or 1806.

No.14 Lithographed plan of North East section of the scheme. The original East part of the Royal Crescent and part of Cornwallis place are indicated as destroyed by the Railway Co. Scale about 1 1/2" to 100 feet - probably about 1841.

No.36 Elevation of Mansfield Place with plan of front walling. Scale 1 1/8" to 10 feet. No date, but no doubt following closely on the original erections of London Street.

No.30. Original plan and elevation, to which reference has already been made, of Abercrombie Place, in monotone, refered to in Articles of Roup of 11, March, 1807 and signed by Archibald Campbell, Treasurer, and containing docket signed by Robert Reid of 4th, Sept. 1805, etc.

No.73 Feuing plan Northumberland, King and Cumberland Streets between Howe and St.Vincent Streets, on the West and Dundas and Pitt Streets on the East. Scale about 2 1/2 " to 100 feet. Signed by John Paterson, July, 3, 1810. Already refered to. The names of the fuears, with the rates, are written in some of the feus. A gap is left at the North-west angle of Northumberland Street, where a property boundary has evidently been in the way.

No. 42 Signed Thomas Brown. Date 1820 (this site was not adopted, and the architectural composition of the houses remained unbroken.) - Plan of London Street shewing site of proposed Church with 6 column portico. Scale: 1/2":10'.

No.78 This plan includes the whole area of Royal circus and Gloucester Place, and is already referdd to. Lithographed Feuing Plan of Ground belonging to Heriot's Hospital, referred to in Articles of Roup, 18:i:1820. Scale 1 3/32:100 ft.

No.63 Centre of Bellvue Crescent is shewn occupied by the original housing feature, therefore date of plan must be before 1823 when the foundation stone of the church was laid. A detached building, probably to be of the public character, is shewn in the centre if the East wing of the Royal circus. Never materialised - setting out of Fettes Row, foot of Pitt St. Royal Crescent, Cornwallis Place, Bellevue Crescent. Scale: about 2 1/4: 10'

No.43 and 44 Refered to in Articles of Roup, 20; Aug. 1823. Signed by the purchasers, four in number - Plan and elevation respectively of the Circular Corner at the East end of London Street, South side on grounds belonging to City and Heriot's Hospital. Scale 1":8'.

No.77 Twice docketted as Plan referred to in Articles of Roup; First on 2, April, 1861 when signed by the Town Treasurer, and secondly on 2 Feb, 1869, when signed by Treasurer and Town Clerk. Feuing Plan and Feuing Plan and Elevation of unbuilt area at South East end of Cumberland Street. Scale: 4":100'

No.67 Detail of cornice for Great King Street, Full Size. Cornices for London Street and Pitt Street.



-Base and capital for ionic pilasters in Bellvue Crescent. Scale: Full size.

-Base for pillasters in Mansfield Place.

-Moulded capitals for Mansfield Place with plinth, cornice, cornice for attic, impost moulding, and cornice over drawing room floor windows.

For drawings referring to Bellvue Crescent (Nos. 40, 40a), Royal Crescent (Nos. 66, 64, 60, 65, 40G and 69)

See under 'Edinburgh - Bellvue Crescent', 'Edinburgh - Royal Crescent'

N.B.R Reproductions of Drawings Nos. 49, 56, 36, 30, 78, 43, 44, 40a, 60, as above.

Fullsize Detail Drawings, nos. 67 and 69.

Block Plan of Scheme in Historiacl File.

See also XSD Miscellaneous, Commission at Work, NMRS Exhibition, Edinburgh in Retrospect, 1976-1978.

Summer 1992. Copyright and permission to reproduce, RCAHMS.

B 78075, B 78076, B 78077, B 78078, B 78079


Aerial Photography (1 September 1994)


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