This little building occupies a unique place in the history of Scottish architecture. It seems to have been newly built for John Maclachlan of Auchentroig, a bonnet laird whose land lay close to the highland line in west Stirlingshire. He set his arms, which were not recorded by Lord Lyon, his initials, those of his two wives and the date 1702 over the door. It is perhaps best described as a small laird's house, artisan built, urbane but with vernacular characteristics, part lowland and part highland, built at the turn of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. It should come as no surprise that it was attacked in August 1710 by Rob Roy MacGregor, who forced Maclachan's surrender by setting fire to the base of the door.
The house appears to have been built on a 'T' plan and was probably part of a larger group of buildings, perhaps a 'fermtoun'. All that remains is a rectangular crowstepped house of four rooms attached to the corner of the much larger Victorian house. The original collar rafter roof was of roughly hewn oak poles covered with Aberfoyle slates pegged to sarking boards. There was some refitting to the late eighteenth century and a major overhaul in the late nineteenth century, when it probably became a gardener's house, then a potting shed. It had been disused for many years and by 1997 the roof was on the point of collapse.
After nearly ten years of campaigning for Auchentroig, Simpson & Brown introduced the owners, the Kiltegan Fathers, to the National Trust for Scotland Little Houses Improvement Scheme. An agreement was reached and funds were raised from Historic Scotland and the Heritage Lotterey Fund. In a particularly delicate operation, the collapsing roof was jacked back into position. By the end of 1998 the house was well repaired and equipped for habitation.
|Project name:||Old Auchentroig|
|Client name:||Auchentroig Estate|
|Awards & nominations:||Scottish Design Awards Commendation (2000)|
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