A house for the Sillitto family - house gallery comments
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A 13 acre zone "of great landscape value" where a building density of 4 houses per acre was envisaged.
Charterhall Road, Edinburgh, where George Morrison & Son offered "sites to feu" provided they did the building.
The model for our house, designed by architects Morris & Steedman for that steep north-facing slope.
Fencing the site at the west end of the former sheep pasture beside Charterhall Road.
Bulldozing to level a slight plateau halfway down the site.
Notice the chimney (centre, to be above the cooker) and sump (left, for single-stack plumbing).
External work complete. So the builders go off to another job for a few months.
Cyril Morrison was a superb joiner. Here he is installing the ceiling.
Tools on the windowsill.
The builders underestimated the work required when they first scanned the architects' drawings.
Still not finished.
The architects' view
Blackford hill from the railway bridge.
Looking over Blackford Halt, where trains to Waverley or Morningside stopped until the Beeching cuts.
The first 'modern' house visible from an Edinburgh bus route.
Ours at last!
We could not get the keys until we paid for many 'extras'.
The hillside was ablaze with the gold of the whins.
John Hutchison's view from his garden.
Dick Sillitto's view.
Late summer 1961
My view - painting all the internal walls.
About 35 square metres of chipboard and 150 metres of careful edges per coat, for upstairs alone!
Tracks where the ground was disturbed -
electricity beside the boulders, gas centrally, and water or drainage right.
The Hutchison's old flowering cherry and their new strip of garden are on the right here.
A very steep climb.
We planted a rowan. Self-sown birch and broom were already there.
Access has been more manageable since the approach was redesigned after 1963's long spell of snow.
1966 or 1967
Spring with daffodils from the Isle of Lewis.
1966 or 1967
In the back garden bob-a-jobbers have levelled a lawn.
1966 or 1967
Salisbury Crags - "The Prows o' Reekie".
1966 or 1967
View from Mortonhall Road.
A new builder has acquired the feuing rights and is building roads, dumping soil behind us.
Arthur's Seat is still visible from the back garden.
An extension designed by Morris & Steedman had been built over the courtyard in 1970.
Preparations for a new house were going on beside our fence.
Houses are getting closer.
A multigarage backs onto our garden where a grasshopper warbler used to sing.
Heatly (Builders) considering the problem created by the roof of the extension.
The building density is now between 6 and 7 houses per acre.
Some of the wood above the extension had to be replaced.
Looking towards Blackford Pond in a spectacular downpour. No problems with the extension roof now.
The west end of the house, and the shed where we kept a boat and a freezer.
The view has changed.
The new house is much higher than its plans promised.
Wild flowers in the font garden included thyme, birdsfoot trefoil, meadow saxifrage and harebells.
The asbestos panels need to be painted.
We added a porch in 1980 - it cost about the same as the extension in 1970 or three quarters of the original 1959 contract price.
The east end.
The south face, with shadow of the porch.
Looking between the self-sown brooms by the roadside.
The bin screen at the front door, seen through the damson branches. The larch that we planted by the boulders is on the right. Only a stump remains of the earliest birch tree.
The north face in the evening sun.
Evening sun in early spring.
A last look at our house on Blackford Hill. It was sold at the end of March, 1991.
Late spring 1990