Nicholas Groves-Raines


1940 -

Conservation architect. Born in County Down (Ireland), the son of an army officer, Groves-Raines trained at Edinburgh College of Art and qualified as an architect in 1972. By 1981, he had his own practice, specialising in the conservation and re-use of historic and listed buildings. Groves-Raines and his Icelandic architect wife, Kristin Hannesdottir, have acquired and restored a succession of historic properties in Edinburgh as their family home; namely Moubray House (1972), Peffermill House (1980), Liberton House (1997) and Andrew Lamb's House (2010). Beyond Edinburgh, the couple bought and restored Edinample Castle.

Other work has included the restoration of B-listed 18th C. tenements in Robertson CLose in Edinburgh's Cowgate, the conversion of Annanhill House in Kilmarnock into flats (1990), restoration of Forter Castle (1990) and Strathleven House (1993), repair and interior conversion of Dowanhill Parish Church as Cottiers Theatre (2004-12), consolidation of Pitsligo Castle (2010), the conservation of Sumburgh Head Lighthouse and provision of a visitor centre (2014).

He has won a RIBA award for his work on St. Andrew's in the Square church in Glasgow, a Europa Nostra Silver Medal for Babbity Bowster also in Glasgow, a Scottish Castles Association Award for the restoration of Fenton Tower (East Lothian) and the 2007 Georgian Group Architectural Award for the restoration of Belmont House on Unst (Shetland). He has also been the recipient of several Civic Trust Awards, and has recently been responsible for the conservation work at Hay's Dock in Shetland, a part of the new Shetland Museum and Archives.


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