Edinburgh World Heritage - News Article


EWH moves to Acheson House

Edinburgh World Heritage has moved to new offices at Acheson House, at the heart of the Old Town.

Nov 24, 2011

The move marks a new era for EWH and for Acheson House, which is also to become part of a new museum hub in the Old Town.

Built in 1633 for Sir Archibald Acheson, Secretary of State for King Charles I, the building has lain empty since 1991 when it was last used by the Scottish Crafts Centre. As a result Acheson House has been on the Buildings at Risk register since 2000.

For the past 12 years EWH has been based at No.5 Charlotte Square, which has a connection with Acheson House through the 4th Marquess of Bute. He was a conservation enthusiast who bought both properties in the early 20th century to restore them to their original condition.

The interior has been repaired and fitted out with necessary services, with funding from Historic Scotland of £120,000 towards the project through EWH. This has included new floors, plasterwork to walls and ceilings, refurbishment of windows and updating the electrical installations. EWH has also recently funded the repair of the roof, using traditional stone slates from a re-opened quarry in Angus.

Adam Wilkinson, Director of Edinburgh World Heritage said: "We are very excited to be establishing our new base in Acheson House, one of the most significant historic buildings in the Old Town. It is inspiring to think that the building was saved by far-sighted conservationists in the 1930s, and it is a privilege to continue their work in ensuring that Edinburghís built heritage is preserves for future generations to enjoy."

Debbie Mays, Director of Policy and Outreach at Historic Scotland said: “Acheson House represents layers of history and has seen real social change in Edinburgh. This move gives it a whole new future as a hub for home owners and visitors to find out more about the World Heritage Site. I am sure that this wonderful new home will help Edinburgh World Heritage reach even more people and be central to the management and celebration of our incredible historic capital city.”

Councillor Deidre Brock, Culture and Leisure Convener for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: "We're delighted to welcome our friends at Edinburgh World Heritage to their new abode at Acheson House; it's a very important part of our vision to bring this A-listed 17th century building back to life as part of a Museums Hub devoted to charting the fascinating development of Scotland's Capital city.  This sympathetic conservation, carried out by Clark Contracts and in partnership with EWH, will help guarantee the future of a building that is surely one of the most historically important in Scotland."

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