Old Gala House

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Old Gala House


Old Gala House by night
Type: Town house
Grid reference: NT49153589
Location: 55°36’50"N, 2°48’32"W
Town: Galashiels
Town house
Owned by: Scottish Borders Council

Old Gala House is a grand house in the Old Town area of Galashiels in Selkirkshire, which today serves as museum and conference centre.

The building was originally built as a tower house in 1487 by the Hoppringill (Pringle) family, who had been granted the lands of Gala by the Earl of Douglas. In 1583, Andrew Hoppringill carried out much improvement and extended the house as his family home. Further expansion took place in 1611, before Andrew returned to live at the family seat of Smailholm Tower in 1635, when his daughter, Jean, married Hugh Scott. A ceiling painting was rediscovered in 1952 celebrating that marriage. Hugh Scott, the new laird, carried out more improvements and extended the house. Further extensions were carried out in the 17th and 18th centuries, completing the edifice we see today. The five bay, U-shaped house is built of rubblestone and is embraced on three sides by gardens complete with water features.

In 1872, another Hugh Scott commissioned David Bryce, an eminent architect, to design and build a new house. On completion the family moved to New Gala House, abandoning the old house. New Gala House was demolished in 1985.

In the 1980s, the local council renovated Old Gala House and converted it to a venue. As well as being a museum and conference centre, the house plays a role in the graduation ceremonies of the local university and also caters for all forms of meetings including marriages. The house also holds the archives of Borders Family History Society.[1]

Outside links


  1. "Archive and Search Room, Galashiels". Borders Family History Society. http://www.bordersfhs.org.uk/BFHSOGHPage.asp. Retrieved 11 May 2012.