Click for Bookshop

Carriden House

Carriden House
©2016 Gazetteer for Scotland

Carriden House

An A-listed Scots Baronial mansion, located amongst 10 ha (25 acres) of gardens and mature woodland on the south shore of the Firth of Forth, Carriden House lies 2 miles (3 km) east of Bo'ness, in the east of Falkirk Council Area. It grew around an L-plan five-storey tower house erected by Sir John Hamilton of Letterick in 1602, quite probably on the site of an earlier property. Located at the eastern end of the Antonine Wall, a mediaeval settlement here was subsequently cleared, although part of Old Carriden Kirk remains to the southwest. The property was sold to Alexander Mylne in 1678 who extended the house to the west and, through a relation master-mason Robert Mylne (1633 - 1710), was able to use craftsmen working at Holyrood Palace to create an ornate ceiling in one of the smaller rooms. This remains despite many later alterations to the building, although modern tastes find it a little ostentatious for the size of the room.

The house passed through various hands in the 18th C., including Francis Charteris (1723 - 1808). In the 19th C., it was the home of Admiral Sir George Hope (1767 - 1818) and then his son, Admiral Sir James Hope (1808-81), who was responsible for the Baronial exterior styling we see today and also further extended the property, adding a new range and the entrance porch. It passed from the Hopes to the Lloyd-Verney family, who spent much of their time in Wales. By the First World War the house was empty and was thought to have been used as a base for German spies, before it became a convalescent home for wounded soldiers. Thereafter the house passed through several owners and tenants until, in the late 1960s, it was on the point of demolition to make way for a power station. Although this was prevented, the house had fallen into disrepair. Having been sympathetically restored from 1977, Carriden House remains a family home which also serves as a guest house. Nearby are stables dating from 1818 and a sizeable walled-garden, now disused.

The area has been occupied for more than two millennia. An Iron-Age settlement has been found close by and the house lies within the boundaries of the easternmost fort on the Antonine Wall, built c.142 AD. The lands here were the property of the Cockburns between 1358 and 1541. They passed to the Abercrombie family before being purchased by John Hamilton of Letterick (Lord Bargany). The house has also been the property of the Setons and Maxwells.


Use the tabs on the right of this page to see other parts of this entry arrow

If you have found this information useful please consider making
a donation to help maintain and improve this resource. More info...

By using our site you agree to accept cookies, which help us serve you better