Leuchars, St. Andrews, Fife
Text by Kevin Murphy
Castle Photographs Courtesy of Clare Goldsmid
The Kingdom of Fife was the capital of Scotland for over six centuries and is best known for its castles, cathedrals and scenic coastline with its cliffs and beaches. To the south of the kingdom of Fife is Dunfermline the former capital of Scotland and Fife's largest settlement the 'Lang Toun' of Kirkcaldy. To the north is the village of Falkland that features a palace and Cupar a countryside market town. Whilst Fife is at almost 50 miles in its widest point there is much to be seen and enjoyed by residents and visitors. Especially for Golf.
Famous for its golf history St Andrews has seven golf courses including the Old Course which is the host of the Open Championship. There are 40 golf courses throughout Fife. The town center of St Andrews features galleries, shopping and restaurants with the background of the medieval Royal Burgh. Guided tours for the Home of Golf allows visitors to see the famous and picturesque links.
But golf is not the only famous part of St Andrews as it is known for its University, one of the oldest in Britain, and the Byre theater founded in 1933. The town has all the amenities of good shopping, hotels and restaurants. If you like the beach and coastal settings nearby East Neuk of Fife with its fishing villages and harbours is perfect for a days journey.
Currently on the market by Savills is the stunning 16th century Earlshall Castle with its 10 bedrooms, eight reception rooms, six bathrooms and beautiful gardens. House Beautiful describes the decorative details:
"Attention to detail is everywhere: rich wood wall panelling, ceiling cornices, a riot of pattern, and opulent colours makes for a real head-turning castle."
Originally a hunting lodge 'The Erlishall' owned by the Earls of Fife began construction in 1546 by Sir William Bruce. The castle was known for its large windows, musket loops and well strategically placed smaller windows for self defense purposes.
Sir William Bruce would later host Mary Queen of Scots at the Earslhall in 1561 and later James VI of Scotland who would become James I of England.
The last of the Bruce family died out in 1708 and in 1824 the property was inherited by Henderson of Fordell. The family sold the castle in 1824 and the property eventually became derelict as a result of neglect.
The castle was bought in 1890 and thanks to its new owner Robert Mackenzie restoration began in 1892 with the prominent Scottish architect Sir Robert Lorimer who was responsible for the Castle's beautiful gardens with its stone walls and various rooms making a 'garden within a garden' with yew and holly hedges.
Three sides of the property are surrounded with woodland and 19 acres that can be used for grazing.
Additional features of Earlshall are three cottages, outbuildings with a five car garage with a total of 53 acres in all.
Transport provides easy access by road, rail and air with the Leuchars rail station on the Aberdeen to London line with links to Dundee and Edinburgh. The Edinburgh Airport is about 50 miles and features all the flights needed. Price information is available upon application.
Country Houses Team
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