6130681_orig.jpg

ABOUT OUR 
PRIORY

Cambusnethan House, also known as Cambusnethan Priory, in North Lanarkshire, Scotland, was designed by James Gillespie Graham and completed in 1820. It is regarded as one of the best remaining examples of a Graham-built country house as it is designed in the quasi-ecclesiastical style of the Gothic revival. Since its creation, the Priory has had multiply uses ranging from a hotel and restaurant to a reenactment "mediaeval banqueting hall", the last use being tenuously linked with William Finnemund, the 12th century, Laird of Cambusnethan.

Historically, the site itself goes back to the early medieval period, with a Norman tower house originally being built near today's present site. During the 17th century, the tower house would be replaced by a manor house. The manor house would burn down in 1810, and the present house was subsequently commissioned and built in 1820.

Built for the Lockhart family of Castlehill, the Priory was a symbolism of the family's wealth. The Lockhart family's crest is still seen today in a carving above the main entrance, it is likely the family crest was used throughout the house, as it was etched into every balustrade of the main staircase. The crest represents a casket, heart and lock and derives from the tradition that the ancestors of this family carried Robert the Bruce's heart back from the holy land. The site was also the birthplace of John Gibson Lockhart, Sir Walter Scott's biographer and later son in law.

 

There are few remaining examples of early 19th-century Neo-Gothic mansions remaining in Scotland as many were demolished in the late 1950s and 1960s. Cambusnethan House is a notable building in its own right as it is an outstanding example of a neo-Gothic style building and is one of the few remaining.[1]

 

The house is two and three storeys high with turrets at each corner, a three-storey bow in the west elevation and a massive square porch. Characteristically, the house was very ornately decorated with a variety of architectural details; castellated roof lines, scrolled pinnacles, narrow pointed windows and drip moulds, and various cornices, besides carved motifs and decorated chimneys. Within recent years, some of the ornate pinnacles have been removed in the interest of safety. There has also been a recent extension to the lower ground floor across a sunken passage across the house with a roof flush with ground level.

794605_orig.jpg