The Knowe is located in the heart of a conservation area in the delightful coastal town of Boness. Equipped with a lookout turret to enjoy spectacular views over the Firth of Forth, it is perhaps not surprising that so romantic a house has been the home of best selling author Eileen Townsend, the author of such novels as Of Woman Born and The Secret Dancer. The house and grounds are thought to be in close proximity also to the Roman Antonine Wall. The property was commissioned in 1876 and built for the local shipping magnate, Provost George Cadell Stewart who founded the famous Boness Childrens Fair Festival that is celebrated annually in June. A short drive from Edinburgh Airport, the grade B-listed building has four public rooms, some with extensive Baltic wood panelling and panoramic views. The dramatic lookout turret was built for the Provost who wanted to watch his ships returning up the Forth. Designed originally by the Edinburgh architect, Alexander Porteous, The Knowe was extended in 1905 and 1912 by the eminent Arts and Crafts architect, Matthew Steele and is considered one of the finest examples of his work. On occasions, the house has been visited by historical societies and viewed on Doors Open Days. Sir Nikolaus Pevsner made a special mention of it in his architectural guides to Edinburgh and the Lothians. Approached through impressive large stone pillars with white and black studded wooden gates, a long sweeping driveway bordered by mature trees and flowering shrubs leads to the front of the house, then continues round to a rear courtyard. Inside, there are numerous engaging details, including a stained glass window above the half landing attributed to one of Scotlands finest stained glass artists, Daniel Cottier. Born in Glasgow in 1838, Cottiers career included working with famous architects such as William Leiper and Alexander Thomson. Other details include extensive Baltic wood panelling, Victorian tiled floors, art nouveau brass door furniture and intricate plasterwork cornicing on the ceilings. The wood panelled reception hall has a mahogany staircase with turned spindles passing the splendid Cottier stained glass window.
The impressive dining room has a stone fireplace with a coal effect gas fire, extensive wood panelling and herringbone oak flooring. There is a separate sitting room benefitting from a beautiful Queen Anne Wedgewood Fireplace. The panelled ground floor bathroom contains an original cast-iron bath on claw feet with the original shower unit over it and period controls. The kitchen is a spacious modern area boasting a gas-fired Aga in a tiled fireplace, as well as a built-in electric oven and gas hob, complemented by granite and wooden work surfaces and country-style, fitted wooden units. The family room area has a ceiling to floor glass windows overlooking the Firth of Forth. For the discerning connoisseur, there is a wine store and a Butlers Pantry. The ground floor also benefits from an office/library, which offers the flexibility to be an additional bedroom or playroom. The large utility room is spacious and airy. Towards the rear of the property, there is a secondary staircase to the first floor. The grand wood-panelled drawing room, on the first floor, offers extensive views through the bay window overlooking the Firth of Forth and has ceiling panels featuring the original owners coat of arms. Also on this floor, there are five spacious bedrooms and two modern bathrooms. Two of the bedrooms (including the charming wood-panelled nursery) and the family bathroom with separate shower cabinet, are situated to the rear of the property. There are wash hand basins fitted into some of the bedrooms. The rear staircase leads to the second floor where you will discover the imposing billiard room, with oriel windows, taking further advantage of the view. The Billiard room has extensive marquetry designs throughout. There is also a sixth bedroom with art nouveau fireplace, continuing the theme of period features that runs throughout the entire building. Access to the lookout turret is given through a spiral staircase on this floor, which has seats to enjoy a panoramic view that goes as far inland as the Trossachs and the Wallace Monument. Outside, there is approximately 1.7 acres of manicured gardens and grounds, some of which is woodland and home to a family of squirrels and a variety of birdlife.
The grounds also benefit from a magnificent Victorian summer house, a glass house, a single garage with workshop, a kennel and a dog run.
Extras (Included in the sale) : All fitted floor coverings, light fittings, gas fired Aga and integrated kitchen appliances. There may be the opportunity to purchase additional items under separate negotiation.
The description of properties on the website do not form part of any offer and all statements and photographs are for illustrative purposes only and not guaranteed. Buyers must satisfy themselves on the accuracy and authenticity of each property listed.