Scotland: Mount Stuart~
MOUNT STUART - GOTHIC
Resplendant in the grandest Gothic-style, Mount
Stuart looms majestic in 300 acres of beatiful gardens on the western scottish Isle of
Bute. It's the grandest gothic-style private house in Britain, and belongs to the Chrichton-Stuarts,
Marquesses of Bute , whose family have held the hereditary title of Steward of Bute since 1157, and who are direct
descendants of Robert the Bruce, whose daughter Marjorie married Walter, Steward of Bute, in the year 1315.
The house is the seat of the Stuarts of Bute, the name derived from the
hereditary office "Steward of Bute" held since 1157. The family are descendants of Robert the Bruce whose
daughter Marjorie married the then Walter Steward, who was 6th High Steward of Scotland, in 1315.
Their son was called Robert, who became Robert II, the first Stuart King.
Much of the old house burned down in 1877, and when this happened, the 3rd Marquess gave free rein
to his combined love of the house and his own artistic and architectural fancies. He commissioned Sir Robert
Anderson from Edinburgh to give substance to his "passion and imagination". It was inspired and moulded by art
and astrology, history and legend. It has an awe-inspiring hall, a magnificent chapel, and was the first house
in Scotland to be lit by electricity. It was also the first private house in Scotland to have an indoor heated
The original house was built in 1719 but rebuilt after the fire on 3rd December 1877. After his
earlier creations of Cardiff Castle and Castell Coch, the 3rd Marquess
imported many of the builders and workman he had already used in South Wales. The main part of the present house is
a flamboyant example of 19th century Gothic Architecture built in a reddish brown sandstone.
Mount Stuart's major features include the colonnaded Marble Hall at the centre of the main block
and the Marble Chapel, which has an elaborate spired tower which is the tallest part of the building. Two earlier
wings in a strikingly different style survive. They are much smaller in scale, have Georgian style sash windows and
are painted white.
During the First World War the house was volunteered by the Lady Augusta Bute to the
Admiralty for use as a Naval Hospital. The hospital operated from 1915-1919 and the Lord and Lady Bute where
recognized by the Admiralty for their generous contributions.
The house was never completed, and you can learn more about the ambitious restoration programme
from the official website - http://www.mountstuart.com
USE THIS LINK TO GO BACK TO THE MAG HOMEPAGE