Leslie House

Located in parkland between the Lothrie Burn and the River Leven in Fife, a half-mile (1 km) east of Leslie and a mile (1.5 km) northwest of Glenrothes, Leslie House was built between 1667 and 1674 for John Leslie, the Duke of Rothes (1630-81), who was the most important noble in Scotland at the time. Probably built around an earlier house, it was the work of John Mylne (1611-67), completed by his nephew Robert Mylne (1633 - 1710) with the help of Sir William Bruce (1630 - 1710). It was an immense structure, described as a palace and with a magnificent interior, but the house suffered a devastating fire in 1763. Three of the ranges were demolished and the remaining west range was recast as a Classical mansion, of three-storeys with a vaulted basement and an attic, between 1765-67. Further alterations followed, including work in 1905-8 by Sir Robert Lorimer (1864 - 1929), and the building was A-listed in 1972. Sold by its owner Norman Leslie, 19th Earl of Rothes, in 1919, it was acquired by industrialist Sir Robert Spencer-Nairn (1880 - 1960). Most of the Rothes Estate passed to the Glenrothes Development Corporation (GDC) to provide space for the New Town of Glenrothes and, in 1952, Spencer-Nairn gave the house to the Church of Scotland who used it as a home for the elderly. This closed in 2003, but the house was again ravaged by fire in 2009 when it was about to be converted into private flats.

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