Tyninghame House

Tyninghame House
©2022 Gazetteer for Scotland

Tyninghame House

Located 3 miles (2 km) NE of East Linton, Tyninghame House and estate lie on the north bank of the River Tyne as it enters the North Sea. The house is a grand Baronial mansion, built of red sandstone, and represents an earlier house much altered by architect William Burn in 1829. The estate, long the property of the Archbishops of St. Andrews, has been owned by the Earls of Haddington since 1628.

Inside, the house had some of the grandest and beautifully-furnished rooms of any house in Scotland and once held a fine collection of early portraits. However, following the death of George Baillie-Hamilton, the 12th Earl Haddington in 1986, the house and its contents were sold. In 1987, the auction house Sotheby's held a massive sale in the house, with English and continental furniture, Gothic tapestries, English and Scottish silver, European and Oriental ceramics and paintings, including the portraits, all falling under the hammer. With the risk it would be dispersed at auction, the contents of the library were purchased by the National Library of Scotland. The core of this important collection is 345 volumes which belonged to the lawyer and politician Thomas Hamilton, 1st Earl of Haddington (1563 - 1637), noted adviser to King James VI.

The house has subsequently been divided into flats and the Haddingtons now live at Mellerstain in the Scottish Borders.

The village of Tyninghame was re-located to its current location just to the W of the estate in 1761 to allow the creation of a parkland landscape around the house. This extensive parkland includes a magnificent gardens created by Lady Haddington, a walled garden, extensive lawns, classical statuary and the ruins of the 12th C. Parish Church of St. Baldred, reduced to an impressive ornament amongst the formal gardens in front of the house. The extensive woodlands, which provide shelter from the North Sea, were first planted in 1705 by Thomas, the 6th Earl of Haddington and his wife, sister of the 1st Earl of Hopetoun.

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