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Edinburgh, High Street, St Giles Cathedral

Cathedral (14th Century), Church (Medieval), War Memorial(S) (20th Century), War Memorial(S) (19th Century)

Site Name Edinburgh, High Street, St Giles Cathedral

Classification Cathedral (14th Century), Church (Medieval), War Memorial(S) (20th Century), War Memorial(S) (19th Century)

Alternative Name(s) Parliament Square; St Giles High Church; St Giles High Kirk; Thistle Chapel; War Memorials; War Memorial Plaques

Canmore ID 52228

Site Number NT27SE 204

NGR NT 25727 73590

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

Permalink http://canmore.org.uk/site/52228

Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2018.

Digital Images


First 100 images shown. See the Collections panel (below) for a link to all digital images.

Administrative Areas

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

Treasured Places

Built between 1909-11, the Thistle Chapel at St Giles' Cathedral is the private chapel of the Knights of the Order of the Thistle, and was designed in an elaborate Gothic style by the architect Sir Robert Lorimer. The Chapel contains a wealth of ornamental stonework and elaborate oak carvings which feature distinctively Scottish motifs such as bagpipe-playing angels.

Information from RCAHMS (SC) 1 July 2007

Gifford, J, McWilliam, C and Walker, D 1984

Archaeology Notes

AP archive transferred from NT27SE 228

Salvage excavation was carried out during the installation of a new organ within the S transept of the kirk. A foundation trench measuring 3.8m by 1m was excavated to a depth of 3m partially by building contractors and partially by archaeologists. The upper metre of the trench contained late post-medieval wall footings and ducts. Beneath this a series of near complete and fragmentary inhumations were recorded. All were extended inhumations, aligned EW. Considerable quantities of disarticulated bone were also recovered. It is probable that the burials predate the extension of the S transept in the late 14th century and were originally in the external kirkyard. Beneath the burials a further 1.4m of deposits were excavated, consisting of bulk clays and sands, similar to deposits found in the 1981 excavations within the cathedral.

Sponsor: City of Edinburgh District Council.

M Collard 1992.

NT 2572 7359. A watching brief was carried out on the excavation of a service trench in the N transept of St Giles Cathedral. The floor level of this part of the transept is approximately 1.5m lower than that of the main part of the church and over 1m higher than the High Street. Sandstone bedrock was encountered at 0.45m depth. At the W end of the trench, there was a step cut into the bedrock, approximately 0.25m deep, in which fragments of two wall footings in very different styles, both running N to S were recognised. Some of the features may relate to the cellar lying adjacent to the W. There was nothing to suggest any antiquity to any of the features.

Sponsor: City of Edinburgh District Council

D A Johnstone 1992.

NT 2572 7360 A watching brief was carried out during the excavation of a service trench around the outside of the church, running from the SW corner along the W and N sides of the building to the steps at the E entrance. No archaeological remains were recorded due to the existence of old service trenches and the proximity of natural deposits close to the surface. Bedrock was encountered in a number of places on the N and W sides, at depths between 0.50m and 0.75m.

D A Johnston 1993.

A watching brief was carried out during the installation of underfloor heating in the central area of the choir. Sleeper walls between the column foundations of the choir, identical to those found in the S choir aisle excavations were recorded. The footings of the columns were situated on a deposit of boulder clay. Cut into this boulder clay a considerable number of graves were recorded within the body of the choir. These had been truncated in modern times, and in places in situ articulated bones protruded from the fills. All were left undistrubed. Part of an enigmatic octagonal stone-built feature close to the base of the most easterly choir column of the S arcade was recorded. Its function and date are at present unclear. Within the rubble infill below the 19th century floor three placks coins were found, two of James IV and one of James V.

M Collard 1993.

NT 2572 7359 A watching brief was undertaken between June and August 2004 in six roof spaces above the southern area of the cathedral (NT27SE 204) as part of ongoing renovation works. This followed on from similar visits conducted on the northern roof spaces in 2003. Finds were confined to items and detritus associated with recent building works, such as scrap lead, wire, etc. Several large moulded stone fragments were noted.

Archive to be deposited in the NMRS.

Sponsor: Campbell & Arnott Ltd.

R Engl 2004.

NT 257 736 We undertook a programme of work in St Giles between March and July 2006. A watching brief was carried out on the excavation of an area in the W wing. Several features of archaeological importance were encountered during the works. A 0.40m wide sandstone wall, 2.6m long and aligned E to W was observed at a depth of 0.50m in the W edge of excavation. Remains of a semicircular wall composed of rough unbonded sandstone blocks were observed at a depth of 0.35m, 2.10m E of the W door. This overlay large, rectangular sandstone foundations in a semicircular formation. A large pit was excavated in the SW corner. It contained fragments of moulded masonry, occasional iron nails and a cache of charnel.

Archaeological features were also observed in two trenches during external excavations on the W side of the Cathedral. A sandstone wall was observed in the N trench, to the E of the Cathedral. It is possible that this was the remains of a building, possibly related to the Tolbooth and perhaps contemporary with the construction of the Luckenbooths. It is also likely that this structure was demolished in 1817 during the widening of the High Street. A wall was also observed within the southern trench.

Archive to be deposited in NMRS.

Sponsor: Peter Moran Ltd.

Laura Scott, 2006.

Architecture Notes

ARCHITECT: Dr Carson by Peter Slater -sculptor

Robert Burn 1796/7 -paid for mason work

William Burn -restoration

John Mylne -repairs 1637-48

William Hay and George Henderson -restoration 1881-3

Reginald Fairlie -1935 Elders Chairs

Sir Robert Lorimer -Thistle Chapel 1909-11

-Shrine of Youth 1928-9

James Craig paid for a design of the King's Seat 1780

Sir Robert Rowand Anderson -Marquis of Montrose

NMRS Print Room

High Street, St Giles

2 prints - General view from the West and view looking up to the crown

W Schomberg Scott Photograph Collection

Acc No 1997/39

REFERENCE: PUBLIC LIBRARY

Scots Magazine June 1810 -1 engraving;

Scottish Ecclesiological Society 1911-12 p.355 -text

REFERENCE:

Scottish Record Office:

Proposals to repair the General Assembly Aisle, and to build a new church in the old church parish. Mr Brown the architect has submitted a plan to the Treasury, but it is suggested that the Treasury architect and Mr William Burn might be willing to advise and to submit plans.

1841 GD 18/4114

Memorial and Petition of Lord Provost, etc to Rt. Hon. The Lords Commissioners of H.M.Treasury.

"Your petitioners have lately removed a great mass of building which stood in the centre of the High Street and in front of St Giles...and now proceeding with taking down a number of shops and booths that have been attached to the venerable fabric on the South".

Appeal for ?15,000 towards sum of ?26-36,000 for repair and for converting 4 "incommodious places"-into 2 in St Giles.

1818 GD51/5/88/1-2

Petition by the Magistrates and Council of Edinburgh & Sir William Maxwell of Calderwood to H.M.Commissioner and the Estates of Parlt. craving authority to buy "a pale" of bells for the High Church and to build a steeple at the West Port with 20,000 marks donated by The Late Thomas Moodie to build a church in Grassmarket (Couldn't be built because it would have been on execution site).

1681 GD86/712

Edinburgh: Interference by the Magistrates of Edinburgh with the burying place of the Montrose family in St Giles.

1818 GD 220/6/1998

St Giles' Cathedral, Edinburgh. Letters and report relating to repair and gilding of King's Seat (4 items), including letter from Robert Johnston, Dean of Guild of Edinburgh, explaining additional work on seat, 9 Dec 1817.

1817-21 SRO/E342/32

St Giles' Cathedral, Edinburgh. Draft account of Sir Henry Jardine's intromissions with grant for fitting up Assembly Aisle, 1833-4.

1838 SRO/E342/42

St Giles' Cathedral, Edinburgh. Letters and papers relating to proposed grant for restoration of exterior walls (23 items), including:

1. Treasury letter concerning memorial by Lord Provost of Edinburgh, 20 Jan 1826;

5. Letter from William Burn, architect, to Lord Provost on estimated cost of work, 20 Dec 1826;

6. Revised estimate, 16 Jan 1827;

13. Letter from Robert Reid, reporting on proposed works, 27 Nov 1827;

14. Letter from Reid on alterations required to allow carriage access to West end of Parliament Square, 13 Dec 1827;

18. Letter from Walter Brown, Lord Provost, on application of grant, 17 Jan 1828;

21. Letter from Burn to Lord Advocate on proposed removal of 'the old porch and projecting window' to improve access to Parliament Square-'No one can feel more solicitous than I do for the preservation of every characteristic feature and peculiarity of our ecclesiastical structures', 21 Jan 1827.

1826-8 SRO/E342/39

St Giles' Cathedral, Edinburgh. Correspondence and papers relating to grants for restoration and for fitting up Assembly Aisle (15 items), including:

3. Letter from Robert Reid declining to superintend work carried out by another architect, 29 May 1829;

5-7. Drafts and extract of Act of Town Council for completing work on walls in terms of treasury grant, 24 June 1829;

12. Letter from Reid on arrangements for fitting up part of church as hall for meetings of General Assembly, 29 Jan 1831;

13. Memorandum on treasury grants for Assembly Aisle and restoration of walls, 20 Sept 1831;

14-15. Memoranda on Assembly Aisle, 24 Sept-7 Nov 1831.

1829-31 SRO/E342/40

Repairs and alterations to St Giles'. Letter from Kincaid MacKenzie, the Lord Provost, to Lord Melville. He encloses a copy of the Town Council's petition to The Treasury for a grant of ?15,000 towards the repair of the building and alterations to the interior.

1818 GD 51/5/88/1-2

REFERENCE: SCOTTISH NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY

Country Life, 15th July 1911 -article and photographs

An oil painting of the Old Tolbooth by Alexander Nasmyth and in possession of Sir David Baird, gives a good impression of the West front of St Giles in the old days (Exhibited Saltire Society Edinburgh Branch, May 1948).

1/2" scale drawings of statuary-measured only. 1921-24 by Robert H Morrison, Aberdeen School of Architecture. Surveys stored at Messrs H J Knee's Repository, Trowbridge, Wiltshire.

REFERENCE: EDINBURGH CENTRAL PUBLIC LIBRARY

William Chambers' "Historical Sketch of St Giles' Cathedral, Edinburgh 1909";

Somerville's "Sketches of Old Buildings", etc -original pencil sketches of Old Record Room, 1823

REFERENCE: NATIONAL LIBRARY OF SCOTLAND

"The Builder" 5th August 1893 -1 plan;

"Uncatalogued MSS of General Hutton" Vol 1, signed Alec Morton, dated 1813 -No 78 plan, scale 1/2":10';

Country Life, 21st Sept 1929 -Thistle Chapel stalls

REFERENCE: SOCIETY OF ANTIQUITIES OF SCOTLAND

Original sketch by Mr Donaldson, c1816

OS NAMEBOOK: Early views and maps of Edinburgh 1544-1852. Ordnance Survey map, Edinburgh sheet 35, of 1852, scale 5':1 statute mile (1/500) gives a plan as at that date of the New College and Free High Church, as well of the Church of St Giles. Also, Ordnance Survey, Edinburghshire, sheet 35 shows the Church and environs of Forrest Road and Bristo Place, in 1852; also the division of the New North in St Giles' after the restoration in 1829-33 (Scale: 5':1 statute mile (1/500))

REFERENCE: EDINBURGH CITY ARCHITECT'S PLAN STORE

Folder giving ground and Gallery Seating Plans, no scale, dated 1835 and signed by Thos. Brown, City Supert. The Church is indicated as occupying the Assembly Aisle of St Giles', but the area includes two bays of this Aisle, the South Transept, and two bays of the Chapel South of the Nave.

REFERENCE: NMRS HISTORICAL FILE

4 pages of text giving brief history of St Giles -filed under "NEW OR HIGH CHURCH";

5 pages of text giving brief history of St Giles -filed under "THE NEW NORTH CHURCH"

REFERENCE:

Sources: Dean of Guild Bundle 1813 January-June 22.4.1813

Pet. The Commissiones of Police

"Old Church Aisle"

Conversion into Police Office by Mr William Woodburn, Builder

Plans encl of Ground floor and Second floor

Sources: Dean of Guild Bundle 1813 January-June 20.5.1813

Pet. Alexander Ponton & William Woodburn

St Giles Church

Alterations "...certain Masonic alterations and Carpenter work..."

Fixed for proceeding without Warrant

No plans encl

Edinburgh, High Street, St Giles' Cathedral, Thistle Chapel.

LORIMER COLLECTION.

F.S. heraldric design for stone frieze over Royal Entrance (the frieze being above the Romanesque archway). Design shows centre panel with angel holding the sovereign arms, and a further three panels to the right (North) of this centre panel.

Insc: 'Thistle Chapel. F.S. Detail of frieze over Royal Entrance. Sheet no. 103'.

Pencil and watercolour on cartridge, with written details in crayon.

Approx. 8'x15'.

Edinburgh, High Street, St Giles' Cathedral, Thistle Chapel.

LOR/PRINT ROOM/4:

Designs for furniture for the Thistle chapel.

Insc: 'St Giles' Cathedral, Edinburgh - proposed furniture for porch of Thistle Chapel'.

Perspective drawings of benches, chair and table, and 'Key Plan'.

s: Lorimer and Matthew.

d: 6.12.1927.

Pencil and watercolour on tracing, mounted on card.

Edinburgh, High Street, St Giles' Cathedral, Thistle Chapel.

LOR/PRINT ROOM/55:

Furniture design for the Thistle Chapel.

Insc: 'Thistle Chapel, Edin. Sketch of Dean's Chair and pine Dieu'.

Presentation drawing 14 1/2" x 8 1/2".

Pencil and watercolour on tracing, mounted on card.

s: R.S. Lorimer.

d: Jan 1910.

Edinburgh, High Street, St Giles' Cathedral.

MSS/LOR/73/57:

2 letters from J. Lochhead of Scott Mortons to Lorimer and Matthew re. the Investiture Seat.

1: quoting cost of chair being altered as per revised drawing.

d: 28th June, 1940.

2: Confirming that Scott Morton agree to collect the existing parts of the Investiture seat from St Giles', and to complete new 'framed up back' plus inscriptions at a cost of #30.0.0.

d: 25th June, 1940.

Edinburgh, High Street, St Giles' Cathedral.

The Thistle Chapel, Lorimer.

13 F.S. cartoons of windows and panels in the Thistle Chapel.

Designs for window lights and relief panels by louis Davies [stained glass artist from London]. 13 of the possible 18 designs, one of which [the single light window, centre East end] was executed by Dr Douglas Strachan, but which is not amongst the 13 in the collection.

Drawings: ink, charcoal, coloured chalks and pencil on cartridge, mounted on linen.

Stamped: 'Robert Lorimer'. n/d.

LS/LOR/THISTLE CHAPEL CARTOONS.

/1:

'Montrose' relief panal. Belongs with /3: 'Argyll'. Pelican design. Written specifications [top left] in pencil describing proposed colours.

/2:

'Home' window light. Lion design.

Insc: 'Thistle Chapel. Heraldic cartoon for glass 'motto scrolls any colour'.

/3:

'Argyll' relief panal [paired with /1 'Montrose']. Lion design. Black and white.

/4:

'Balfour of Burleigh', window light.

Insc: 'Thistle Chapel' heraldic cartoon for glass'.

Seal/eagle design. Black/grey/pink.

/5:

'Aberdeen' window light. Paired with 'Hamilton of Dalzell', /12. North window of East end. 2 figures.

/6:

Single light window at West end. Lion/unicorn design of the Royal Arms of Scotland.

/7:

'Haddington' design. Spaniel design.

/8:

'Errol' design. 2 figures.

/9:

'Rosebury' design. 2 lions.

/10:

'Roxburghe' window light. 2 figures.

/11:

'Tweedale' window light. 2 stags.

/12:

'Hamilton of Dalzell' window light. Paired with /5 'Aberdeen', North window of East end. Design: stag and figure.

/13:

'Fife' design. 2 figures with laurels.

NMRS REFERENCE:

Historical File - 'The Tolbooth Church', 'The New or High Street', 'The New North Church' ad 'St Giles, Church of'. Sketch plan of surrounding rail erected by Wm Burn, 1836.

Unable to locate at time of upgrade 15.2.2000.

NMRS REFERENCE:

RIAS Collection.

ESME ( ), architect.

Design for a sanctuary lamp for a proposed war memorial chapel for St Giles, Edinburgh.

Insc: 'St Giles Cathedral Edinburgh. Proposed War Memorial Chapel' 'Sanctuary Lamp. True elevation. Plan. Oblique elevation. 36 Heriot Row Edinburgh'.

s: 'Esme Gordon'.

d: 'Feb 50'.

Pencil and wash.

29" x 21 1/2".

Acc No1980/19.

Unable to locate at time of upgrade 15.2.2000.

Non-Guardianship Sites Plan Collection, DC23618- DC23664, 1911, 1920,1924 & 1952- 1953.

This site was recorded as part of the Listed Buildings Recording Programme (LBRP) for 2001-02.

Information from RCAHMS (NMC), 2002.

Activities

Modification (1796 - 1797)

Robert Burn 1796/7 -paid for mason work

Modification (1828 - 1836)

Modifications in the Cathedral carried out by William Burn.

Modification (1872 - 1900)

Programme of restoration and additions.

Photographic Record (1872 - 1884)

Photographs taken of restoration and other works.

Modification (1907 - 1930)

Modifications carried out in the Cathedral by Sir Robert Lorimer, including a new communion table and the Finlay Memorial.

Modification (1909 - 1933)

Construction of, and subsequent additions to, the Thistle Chapel.

Photographic Record (1909 - 1930)

Photographs taken during construction and modifications to the Thistle Chapel.

Modification (1928 - 1929)

Construction of the Chapel of Youth.

Modification (November 1930 - March 1931)

Works carried out on the Moray Aisle.

Build (August 1940)

Organ Case. Full Elevation. St Giles Cathedral (High Kirk of St. Giles). Edinburgh.

Build (August 1940)

Organ Case. Sectional Detail. St Giles Cathedral (High Kirk of St. Giles). Edinburgh.

Modification (February 1950)

Construction of War Memorial Chapel.

Build (February 1950)

Elevation of Communion Table for Proposed War Memorial Chapel. St Giles Cathedral (High Kirk of St. Giles). Edinburgh.

Build (February 1950)

Elevation Looking East of Proposed War Memorial Chapel. St Giles Cathedral (High Kirk of St. Giles). Edinburgh.

Build (February 1950)

Drawing Details of Sanctuary Lamp for Proposed War Memorial Chapel.

Modification (1950)

Addition of the Bilsland Crest and the crest to Stirling of Fairburn to the Thistle Chapel.

Build (1950)

Pencil and Ink Sketch of Proposed War Memorial Chapel

Modification (1952 - 1953)

Production of a crest for the Duke of Hamilton in the Thistle Chapel.

Modification (1 January 1953 - 31 December 1954)

Production of a crest for the Duke of Edinburgh in the Thistle Chapel.

Build (July 1953)

Detail Elevations of Oak Chest. St Giles Cathedral (High Kirk of St. Giles). Edinburgh.

Modification (1957)

Production of a crest for the Thistle Chapel.

Modification (1969 - 1972)

Works carried out by Ian G Lindsay.

Photographic Record (1970)

A record of St Giles Cathedral taken by William McKelvie.

Publication Account (1981)

It has been suggested that the chapel of Edinburgh Castle which was conveyed to Holyrood Abbey (ESC, 1905, 75), served as the church for the early urban nucleus (Duncan, 1975, 466). St. Giles succeeded this Edinburgh Castle chapel as burgh church and its parish was carved from that of St. Cuthbert (Duncan, 1975, 466). David I, however, granted the church of St. Giles with its grange to the Lazarites, a possession which was later confirmed by Pope Innocent III (Cowan, 1967, 177). During the period of war and schism in the fourteenth century the lands of St. Giles and other patronage of the church fell to the Scottish crown which proceeded to disburse them once more. As early as 1419 the burgesses of Edinburgh were pressing the crown to raise St. Giles to collegiate status, but this was not granted until 1466 (Cowan, 1967, 177). By the year 1559, St. Giles boasted forty-four chantry altars and nearly one hundred officiating clergy (Meikle, 1948, 22).

It is possible that the earliest church structure was that of an unaisled nave with the same dimensions as the present one, and probably an apsidal sanctuary in the position of the existing crossing (RCAM, 1951, 26). It is unknown when the church became cruciform although the tower was in existence by 1387 (RCAM, 1951, 26). By the early fifteenth century, at the time when Edinburgh first pursued the idea of collegiate. status, virtually a new church was taking form. It consisted of a choir with four bays and side aisles; a nave of five bays, also with side aisles; and a central crossing with north and south transepts (MacGibbon, 1896, ii, 420). St. Giles survived the Reformation with little external structural damage, and internally it suffered only through the large number of times it was divided and subdivided to take in new congregations. When episcopacy was established in 1633 the body of the church was temporarily made whole again, although Charles II 1s plans to see the building remodelled on cathedral lines went unrealised (RCAM, 1951, 30). In 1871, when it was decided to restore it as much as possible to its pre-Reformation character, all galleries and partition walls were removed, opening the building into a single place of worship (Gray, 1940, 21).

Information from ‘Historic Edinburgh, Canongate and Leith: The Archaeological Implications of Development’ (1981).

Photographic Survey (22 November 1983)

Aerial Photography (1983)

Aerial Photography (1985)

Aerial Photography (1990)

Watching Brief (1992)

NT 2572 7359. A watching brief was carried out on the excavation of a service trench in the N transept of St Giles Cathedral. The floor level of this part of the transept is approximately 1.5m lower than that of the main part of the church and over 1m higher than the High Street. Sandstone bedrock was encountered at 0.45m depth. At the W end of the trench, there was a step cut into the bedrock, approximately 0.25m deep, in which fragments of two wall footings in very different styles, both running N to S were recognised. Some of the features may relate to the cellar lying adjacent to the W. There was nothing to suggest any antiquity to any of the features.

Watching Brief (1993)

NT 2572 7360 A watching brief was carried out during the excavation of a service trench around the outside of the church, running from the SW corner along the W and N sides of the building to the steps at the E entrance. No archaeological remains were recorded due to the existence of old service trenches and the proximity of natural deposits close to the surface. Bedrock was encountered in a number of places on the N and W sides, at depths between 0.50m and 0.75m.

Aerial Photography (1993)

Aerial Photography (1993)

Watching Brief (1993)

A watching brief was carried out during the installation of underfloor heating in the central area of the choir. Sleeper walls between the column foundations of the choir, identical to those found in the S choir aisle excavations were recorded. The footings of the columns were situated on a deposit of boulder clay. Cut into this boulder clay a considerable number of graves were recorded within the body of the choir. These had been truncated in modern times, and in places in situ articulated bones protruded from the fills. All were left undistrubed. Part of an enigmatic octagonal stone-built feature close to the base of the most easterly choir column of the S arcade was recorded. Its function and date are at present unclear. Within the rubble infill below the 19th century floor three placks coins were found, two of James IV and one of James V.

Aerial Photography (1994)

Project (1997)

The Public Monuments and Sculpture Association (http://www.pmsa.org.uk/) set up a National Recording Project in 1997 with the aim of making a survey of public monuments and sculpture in Britain ranging from medieval monuments to the most contemporary works. Information from the Edinburgh project was added to the RCAHMS database in October 2010 and again in 2012.

The PMSA (Public Monuments and Sculpture Association) Edinburgh Sculpture Project has been supported by Eastern Photocolour, Edinburgh College of Art, the Edinburgh World Heritage Trust, Historic Scotland, the Hope Scott Trust, The Old Edinburgh Club, the Pilgrim Trust, the RCAHMS, and the Scottish Archive Network.

Photographic Survey (4 February 2003)

Watching Brief (June 2004 - August 2004)

NT 2572 7359 A watching brief was undertaken between June and August 2004 in six roof spaces above the southern area of the cathedral (NT27SE 204) as part of ongoing renovation works. This followed on from similar visits conducted on the northern roof spaces in 2003. Finds were confined to items and detritus associated with recent building works, such as scrap lead, wire, etc. Several large moulded stone fragments were noted.

Archive to be deposited in the NMRS.

Watching Brief (March 2006 - July 2006)

NT 257 736 We undertook a programme of work in St Giles between March and July 2006. A watching brief was carried out on the excavation of an area in the W wing. Several features of archaeological importance were encountered during the works. A 0.40m wide sandstone wall, 2.6m long and aligned E to W was observed at a depth of 0.50m in the W edge of excavation. Remains of a semicircular wall composed of rough unbonded sandstone blocks were observed at a depth of 0.35m, 2.10m E of the W door. This overlay large, rectangular sandstone foundations in a semicircular formation. A large pit was excavated in the SW corner. It contained fragments of moulded masonry, occasional iron nails and a cache of charnel.

Archaeological features were also observed in two trenches during external excavations on the W side of the Cathedral. A sandstone wall was observed in the N trench, to the E of the Cathedral. It is possible that this was the remains of a building, possibly related to the Tolbooth and perhaps contemporary with the construction of the Luckenbooths. It is also likely that this structure was demolished in 1817 during the widening of the High Street. A wall was also observed within the southern trench.

Archive to be deposited in NMRS.

Sponsor: Peter Moran Ltd.

Project (February 2014 - July 2014)

A data upgrade project to record war memorials.

Excavation

Salvage excavation was carried out during the installation of a new organ within the S transept of the kirk. A foundation trench measuring 3.8m by 1m was excavated to a depth of 3m partially by building contractors and partially by archaeologists. The upper metre of the trench contained late post-medieval wall footings and ducts. Beneath this a series of near complete and fragmentary inhumations were recorded. All were extended inhumations, aligned EW. Considerable quantities of disarticulated bone were also recovered. It is probable that the burials predate the extension of the S transept in the late 14th century and were originally in the external kirkyard. Beneath the burials a further 1.4m of deposits were excavated, consisting of bulk clays and sands, similar to deposits found in the 1981 excavations within the cathedral.

Build

Proposals for War Memorila Chapel.

Build

Details of Sanctuary Lamp for Proposed War Memorial Chapel. St Giles Cathedral (High Kirk of St. Giles). Edinburgh.

Build

Proposed New Floor Inlay. King George Vl Memorial in Thistle Chapel. St Giles Cathedral (High Kirk of St. Giles), Edinburgh.

Build

Organ Case. Sectional Detail and Plan of Alterations to North Porch. St Giles Cathedral (High Kirk of St. Giles). Edinburgh.

References

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