Scottish Dormers


hi everyone, hope you are all keeping well and I apologize for my lack of posting over the past while.  It’s been a bit hectic and even now, I only have time for a brief post.

Last time I wrote about Storm Porches and I have found another article by Stephen Archibald on Scottish Dormers.  I would be interested to hear if anyone else has these kind of dormers close to where you are, particularly in Scotland.  Stephen mentions his trip to Glasgow and seeing some there, back in 1974.

The Corinthian Club

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We began our tour to Arran and the West Coast of Scotland at the Corinthian Club, a truly magnificent venue situated in downtown Glasgow.

The architecture is something to behold and while I was trying to acquaint myself with the remainder of the group, I confess I was  wondering how I could possibly get a decent amount of photos of the room we were having lunch in.


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David Hamilton built the building in 1842 on the site of the 18th Century Virginia Mansion.  It was very elaborately decorated by renown architects, artists and artisans including James Salmon (Sr.), John Thomas and James Ballantine.

It was originally used for the Glasgow Ship Bank and in 1929, it was converted to judiciary courts, when the interiors were hidden behind false walls and ceilings.

G1 Group restored the building in 1999, including the reconstruction of Roman Doric and fantastic classical architecture.


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The venue is set up for anything as simple as a quiet lunch while out shopping to weddings and large corporate events.  It houses a Brasserie, 5 bars, 7 event spaces, a Casino and Club, all over 14 rooms and 5 floors.




We were served a very tasty lunch there and I had a breast of chicken supreme, with black pudding mash, baby carrots and a mustard sauce.  The mustard set the chicken off nicely and the black pudding mash was delicious.


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Charles Rennie Mackintosh

hello there, i’ve been gone for a while.  had a couple of day’s away this week and life has been busy.

i recently found some really fantastic photos of Glasgow on facebook under “I am Scot” … it is a part of the Scottish tourist site.  Amongst the pictures were some associated with Charles Rennie Mackintosh, whom i have always found fascinating and have bought some jewellery with his designs in the past.  These photos are from the facebook site.

House For An Art Lover, Bellahouston
House For An Art Lover, Bellahouston
Glasgow School of Art, designed by Mackintosh

there is a website telling you all about Mackintosh and here is a video of some of his work:

Carved Stones in St. Andrews

News Release this morning from Historic Scotland. Sounds like an interesting thing to see if you are in the area.


Visitors to St. Andrews Cathedral will be able to find out more about the secrets of the ancient site’s past at a special event this Sunday, 12th June 2011.

The cathedral will be offering a series of tours of its magnificent carved stone collection, which is housed in the cathedral’s crypt. Visitors will be able to hear first hand the secrets that the stones hold from an expert in pictish stonework who will be able to explain the markings and some of the stories associated with the site.

The cathedral is home to an outstanding collection of early-Christian and medieval carved stones as well as a fine collection of post-Reformation memorials. Pride of place is the St Andrews sarcophagus, a masterpiece of 8th-century Pictish sculpture.

Neil Robertson, at St Andrew’s Cathedral said: “The Cathedral has one of the finest collections of stone art in Scotland, dating between the 8th and 17th centuries. These stones were in many cases the news outlets of their day, they told the story of individuals, their achievements and the societies which they belonged to.

“The event will give members of the public the opportunity to find out more about the stones and the people who once worshipped and resided here through times of huge political and social change.

“Visitors are encouraged to bring their own torch so they are able to see the wonderful carved details of the stones more clearly. Numbers are limited to around 18 per tour, so places need to be booked in advance.”

‘The Secrets of the Stones’ event will run at the cathedral at 11am and 2pm on Sunday. Tours will take 45 minutes and are included in the admission price. Numbers are limited and interested parties should call 01334 472 563 to book their place.

Arbroath Abbey


” … as long as but a hundred of us remain alive, never will we on any conditions be brought under English rule. It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom — for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself.”

These words were made famous in the Declaration of Arbroath (1320). Even although Robert Bruce defeated Edward II of England at Bannockburn (1314), the Wars of Independence were not ended. The English had Pope John XXII keep the sentence of excommunication passed on King Robert in 1306 and in response, 40 Scottish nobles, barons and freemen sent an apologia to Pope John. This formal document, probably drafted by Abbot Bernard of Arbroath (King Robert’s chancellor), stated that Scotland was an independent and sovereign kingdom.


Arbroath Abbey has always fascinated me, mostly because of the history behind the building.  I’ve never been there but it’s on my wish list and some day I hope to go and see it.

Some other historical facts on the Abbey are that it is an expression of the European twin-towered church façade design and a reflection of the piety of Scotland’s medieval kings. Founded in 1178 by King William I, it was a tribute to William’s childhood friend, Thomas Becket (Archbishop of Canterbury), who was murdered in 1170.

The king invited the monks from Kelso Abbey to establish the monastery and when he died in 1214, he was buried before the high altar.

Until the Scottish Reformation in 1560, religious life continued on at the abbey. However in 1580, parts of the abbey were taken to construct a new burgh church and by 1700, the abbey looked the way it does today.

For more information, see the Historic Scotland website.


Free Admission

St. Andrew's Cathedral


St. Andrew’s Day is November 30th and in honour of the patron saint’s day, Historic Scotland is offering free entry to a multitude of Scotland’s properties, including castles, abbeys, cathedrals and mills.

On St. Andrew’s Day itself, there are three places open … St. Andrew’s Castle, St. Andrew’s Cathedral and Edinburgh Castle.  However, on the weekend before that (November 27 & 28),  there are 48 properties open to the public FREE!

For a list from Historic Scotland, see their website

Edinburgh Castle

Culloden House

 By the end of the 18th century, fine houses and mansions were built around Inverness, the capital of the Highlands.  Wealthy families came from all over the Highlands to settle and enjoy the fine life of the rich and famous in the city.

Culloden House still remains and today this fine Georgian mansion, over 200 years old,  is open for reservations to stay in this beautiful hotel.  Originally, there was a 16th century Jacobean castle on this site and parts of the house still remain and are presently used.


There is a wonderful drawing room with Adam plasterwork, chandeliers and a large open fire or you can relax in the bar with leather seatings and tall windows overlooking the lawn.  The baronial Forbes Room has a beamed and chandeliered ceiling, Royal Stuart tartan drapes, oak paneling and a marbled fireplace.

In typical 18th century fashion, the owners grew an arboreteum of trees from seeds collected 300 years ago while exploring China and the Americas.  The magnificent forest that surrounds the mansion now is evidence of the planting so long ago.

40 acres of open parkland, bicycle paths, a croquet lawn, tennis court, a duck pond and rhododendron walks are there for your enjoyment.  Also included is a four acre walled garden open from the spring through the autumn.

Enjoy fresh Highland air, exercise and pampering with croquet set up on the front lawn, walking or jogging in the Culloden Forest, a new all-weather tennis court or a beauty and massage treatment.  Aromatherapy massage, manicures, pedicures and make-up or try one of the newly refurbished guestrooms with a spa tub included.

Culloden House is also known for fabulous food and in a comment from “The Top 60 Independent UK Restaurants, Restaurant Guide, The Guardian”, it’s been said:

“Here in the northernmost area of Britain is a grand Scottish country house which thankfully takes its food seriously.  Chef Michael Simpson draws on superb local and near-local produce: Loch Fyne salmon, sweet Orkney crab, Scotch beef fillet from the Highlands.  Even the water here taste good although the whisky tastes better.  What’s also nice about Culloden is that for a country house it isn’t too uptight, although prices reflect its style and standards.  Children are welcome, and vegetarians too.”

A sample of the menu:

Tastes from Scotland

Scottish Smoked Salmon ‘Oak Smoked & Ginger Cured’,
Crème Fraiche, Beetroot, Caper Dressing


Timbale of Haggis, Neeps and Tatties
Whisky & Chive Jus


Tournado of Scottish Beef Fillet, Wild Garlic Potato Cake,
Lamb Sweetbreads, Parsley & Spriach Puree, Port Jus

Athole Brose
A confection of Honey, Cream, Whisky and Oatmeal
with fresh Raspberries and Water Ice

Although it is definitely out of my price range, it is fun for me to check out how the other half lives and Culloden House looks like a wonderful retreat away from it all.  Very beautiful and opulent.  I think it’s a bit telling that the address is merely “Culloden House, Inverness, Scotland” … I think that says it all.

If you’re feeling like you’d like to pop in or maybe send someone there for a nice break, the website is