Ravelston Garden

Ravelston Garden

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Ravelston Garden is a 1930s Art Deco
Art Deco
Art deco , or deco, is an eclectic artistic and design style that began in Paris in the 1920s and flourished internationally throughout the 1930s, into the World War II era. The style influenced all areas of design, including architecture and interior design, industrial design, fashion and...

 development of residential buildings in the suburb of Ravelston
Ravelston is a suburb of Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland, to the south of Queensferry Road .The area is primarily made up of detached and semi-detached housing, as well as modern apartments and many bungalows...

 in Edinburgh
Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland, the second largest city in Scotland, and the eighth most populous in the United Kingdom. The City of Edinburgh Council governs one of Scotland's 32 local government council areas. The council area includes urban Edinburgh and a rural area...

, the capital of Scotland
Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. Occupying the northern third of the island of Great Britain, it shares a border with England to the south and is bounded by the North Sea to the east, the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west, and the North Channel and Irish Sea to the...


It was designed by Andrew Neil and Robert Hurd, 1935-36, and consists of three white-harl
Harling is a Scottish term describing an exterior building surfacing technique. The theory of harling is to produce a long-lasting weatherproof shield for a stone building. A pigment can be embedded in the harled material, thus obviating the need for repainting...

ed International Style
International style (architecture)
The International style is a major architectural style that emerged in the 1920s and 1930s, the formative decades of Modern architecture. The term originated from the name of a book by Henry-Russell Hitchcock and Philip Johnson, The International Style...

 blocks of 4-storey flats. They were originally known as the Jenners
Jenners Department Store, now known simply as Jenners, is a department store located in Edinburgh, Scotland, and was the oldest independent department store in Scotland until its acquisition by House of Fraser in 2005.- History :...

 flats, who were the managing agents. Ravelston Garden is a category A listed building, designated by Historic Scotland
Historic Scotland
Historic Scotland is an executive agency of the Scottish Government, responsible for historic monuments in Scotland.-Role:As its website states:...

 for "national or international importance".

The Edinburgh volume of the Buildings of Scotland
Pevsner Architectural Guides
The Pevsner Architectural Guides are a series of guide books to the architecture of the British Isles. Begun in the 1940s by art historian Sir Nikolaus Pevsner, the 46 volumes of the Buildings of England series were published between 1951 and 1975. The series was then extended to Scotland and...

 series describes them as "Less stylish but more serious-minded". Architectural historian Charles McKean
Charles McKean
Charles McKean is Professor of Scottish Architectural History at the University of Dundee.Charles McKean was formerly Secretary and Treasurer of the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland. Educated at Fettes College, the University of Poitiers , and the University of Bristol, from 1977 to...

 describes them as "Jaunty blocks of international style flats on a butterfly plan, complete with roof gardens, canopies, balconies and curving garages. Particularly clever design incorporating up-to-date labour saving devices. Must have caused quite a stramash amidst the douce, opulent villas of the Dykes..."

The book Above Edinburgh & South East Scotland by Angus and Patricia MacDonald has a magnificent panoramic photograph of the three blocks, and describes them as "Proving that Edinburgh was in touch with the very latest architectural ideas in the 1930s, these flats... were among the first buildings to bring the International Style to the city".

The original fenestration was based on galvanised thin metal of the "Crittall
Crittall Windows Ltd
Crittall Windows Ltd is a notable English manufacturer of steel-framed windows, today based in Witham, Essex, close to its historic roots in the county...

" type, some of which were replaced by modern equivalents during repainting in 1989. Their original colour was green, and they are now white to ensure a common colour amongst the blend of new and original windows. Some 43 of the 48 flats have new windows. Other changes have include novel up and over garage doors, discreetly designed to match their originals.

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