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We're changing

We have created a new public body, Historic Environment Scotland. While we work on shaping our future we can reassure you that all services and products will continue as normal. Please follow our progress and find out more about our new organisation.

What are we working on now?

Garthamlock and Cranhill Water Towers
As well as our day to day work assessing designation proposals we are also working on a number of other exciting projects.


2015 -18 Dual designation project
In the past, some sites have been scheduled as monuments of national importance and listed as buildings of special architectural or historic interest. We call this ‘dual designation’. These days we recognise that it is not helpful for structures to be both scheduled and listed.

We are currently working on a 3-year nationwide project to review all sites which are both scheduled and listed. Removing dual designation will help to reduce confusion about designation and provide clarity on the best approach to managing sites in the future.

By the end of the process, most dual designated sites which have been reviewed will be either scheduled monuments or listed buildings, depending on their character and circumstances. A few properties that no longer meet the criteria for either listing or scheduling may have the designations removed completely.

2014-15 Courts and Prisons project
We are working in partnership with the Scottish Court Service to review their listed and unlisted courthouses across Scotland. Our Scottish Courts Preliminary Report has more information about the project.

We are also working with the Scottish Prison Service to review their existing listed prisons. Our preliminary report on prisons will be available soon.

2015-16 University of Edinburgh project
A major review of listed and unlisted buildings within the University of Edinburgh estate is underway and we will be launching the second title in our Building Knowledge series to celebrate the University’s unique architectural legacy in 2016.

Commemorating Scotland’s role in the First World War
As part of marking the centenary of the First World War, we have begun a review of drill halls.  Scotland’s territorial army had drill halls all across Scotland, most of them built around 1890-1910. During the war the drill halls were the link between community and the soldiers in the locally affiliated units.   Around 100 drill halls will be will be considered for listing as part of this review.

In addition to the drill halls project, we have published a new website Commemorating the First World War to promote awareness of Scotland’s contribution to the First World War. We are also working in partnership with other organisations to commemorate the War, for example with the Council for British Archaeology in their Home Front Legacy project, which provides training and information for local groups and communities to help them record their wartime heritage.

Dictionary of Scottish Architects

Pre-1840 architects’ biographies

The project to add architects who practised in the period before 1840 is now well under way and most architects from this period have now been entered. The increasing availability of online resources such as the catalogue compiled by Dr Joe Rock of Edinburgh Dean of Guild drawings, digitised 18th and 19th century newspapers and digitised genealogical information is proving invaluable to this project.

Spotlight on Architects series

A series of short introductory essays on the diverse and fascinating work of a selection of Scotland’s talented local architects. The essays are available to download at or you can click below for the first in our series, the Elgin architect, John Wittet (1868-1952), and the second in our series, Gavin McConnell (1923-2014) who worked for the Fife Education Architects Department.

PDF icon John Wittet 1868-1952 [pdf, 2.5mb]

PDF icon Gavin McConnell 1923-2014 [pdf, 1.3mb]

Making our information more accessible

Designations records – new style coming soon

Launching in Autumn 2015 the new records will have a more user friendly design. For the first time, records for listed buildings will have the facility to include up to four images and a general location map.

Improving our search facility

Our ‘new look’ records will be joined by a new and improved search facility that will help you perform advance searches and view records for listed buildings, scheduled monuments, inventory gardens and designed landscapes, inventory battlefields and historic marine protected areas.


Scotland’s Listed Buildings – new edition

A new edition of our free booklet for owners and occupiers of listed buildings Scotland’s Listed Buildings [link to: ] was unveiled in 2015. You can also now read it as a digital edition.

Scotland’s Canals published

Following the completion of our nationwide review of canal buildings on the Scottish Canals estate we have worked in partnership with Scottish Canals to produce a book entitled Scotland’s Canals about the extraordinary story of the construction, abandonment and renaissance of these fascinating structures.
This is the third publication in the series which began with Scotland’s Sporting Buildings and continued with Scotland’s First World War

Do you have a favourite listed building or scheduled monument?
Find out if we included it in our beautiful postcard packs celebrating a selection of the best of Scotland’s listed buildings and scheduled monuments.

Or you might prefer our postcard pack about Edinburgh and Glasgow’s public houses.

We would like to hear from you! Is there a particular issue you would like us to address? Send us your ideas by emailing us at call us on 0131 668 8701/8705.


View our range of publications about listed buildings.


Dictionary of Scottish Architects

William Fraser

A web resource for anyone interested in the built environment and those who created it.

Contact us

Designations Team
Historic Environment Scotland
Longmore House
Salisbury Place
Tel: +44 (0) 131 668 8701/5