Trust targets six derelict properties it wants to see brought back to life

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A VICTORIAN hotel, a derelict school hall and historic cottages have been identified as being at risk by a leading heritage group.

The Scottish Civic Trust has highlighted six properties across the Capital – including the soon-to-be-redeveloped Barnton Hotel and the Broughton Halls on Broughton Street – which it wants to include on its buildings at risk register.

Under the move, the derelict properties would join a further 13 buildings across the Capital that are currently on the register, which highlights examples of Scotland's architectural heritage in need of urgent restoration.

Among the new buildings identified by the SCT are a row of Victorian farm cottages, a crumbling 19th-century villa and two historic houses near Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's childhood home in Liberton.

The 113-year-old listed Barnton Hotel, which is currently being partially demolished and redeveloped into flats, has been recommended for inclusion on the register, alongside Broughton Halls, which was built in 1853 for George Heriot's School but has been derelict since a bid to turn it into an arthouse-style cinema fell through in 1999.

The civic trust has also mentioned a listed cricket pavilion near St Margaret's School, off Craigmillar Park, which was designed by Alexander Lorne Campbell in 1895.

It wants to see it reinstated on the register, as it has not been refurbished by its owners for decades.

A spokeswoman for the civic trust said: "We have drawn up a preliminary list of properties in Edinburgh that were considered to be vulnerable and in need of restoration. Edinburgh council has agreed with us that these six buildings should be included on the register, but this is just the first stage of our considerations.

"We are planning a full survey of Edinburgh over the next 12 months.

"We will be looking at every conservation area in the city and identifying even more historic buildings that are at risk.

"We would certainly expect to find more than just these six that are in danger when we carry out that investigation."

Four of the buildings have already been given either C or B-listed status by heritage group Historic Scotland, which supports the SCT in maintaining and supporting the database of at-risk properties.

The two others – the Victorian Ravenscroft Cottages in Gilmerton and the 19th-century Verdun Villa near South Queensferry – have not been listed, although they have been included on the list as they are currently unoccupied and in need of urgent repair.

The move to include the buildings on the register has been welcomed by city planning officials, who said it would help encourage developers to restore them to their former glory.

Andrew Holmes, director of city development, said: "Edinburgh has a low proportion of buildings at risk, with the majority of the city's historic buildings being well cared for by their owners.

"However, while this high level of care is a positive asset for the city, the condition and future of individual buildings placed on the buildings at risk register is not a matter for complacency."


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&#149 Blackfriars UP Church, Blackfriars Street

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Buildings to be added

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&#149 Barnton Hotel, Queensferry Road

&#149 Verdun Villa, Standingstane Road

&#149 Ravenscroft Cottages, Ravenscroft Street

&#149 Clubhouse, Crawfurd Road