Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Botanic Cottage to be rebuilt using same stones in Edinburgh

Botanic Cottage
Image caption Botanic Cottage was at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh site in Leith Walk

An 18 Century cottage in Edinburgh which was painstakingly removed stone by numbered stone is to be put back together less than two miles away.

Botanic Cottage was the gateway to the previous Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh (RBGE) site in Leith Walk between 1764 to 1821.

When RBGE transferred the Leith Walk plant collections to Inverleith, in 1820, the cottage fell into disrepair.

It then faced demolition in 2008 before campaigners saved it.

Friends of Hopetoun Gardens, saved the building and a small grant was secured to take it down stone by stone.

Historical value

In 2009 the Botanic Cottage Trust was formed to secure a new future for the cottage at Inverleith.

During this process, it was found to have "immense historical and heritage value", with "fascinating connections" to the construction of the New Town and the Scottish Enlightenment.

Now the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has approved the first round of a £1.2m bid to rebuild it using its original materials in the Demonstration Garden to the north of the Botanics' site.

The cottage was used by Professor John Hope, a botanist of international renown and a leading character in the Scottish Enlightenment, who taught students about the emerging science of botany.

Once it is rebuilt it will be used as an education centre.

Dr David Rae, RBGE director of horticulture and learning, said: "This is exciting news for a truly unique project that will secure valuable benefits for education, heritage and the local community.

"The Botanic Cottage is significant to RBGE's history but it also has a vital role to play in the future."

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