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The Grounds

An old manuscript note mentions that "the wilderness way of planting" was lntroduced into Scotland in 1699. That year, the then Laird of Pitreavie, Wardlaw of Logie, planted a great many acres with ash, birch and elm trees on "the wilderness system at Pitreavie". Part of the present-day Rosyth was known as "the Wilderness" right up to the 1930's, probably long after the original meaning of the term had been lost. The closest the present grounds get to a "wilderness" is in the overgrown water garden set among the trees to the east of the Castle. The garden was commissioned by Henry Beveridge, and apparently included a waterfall.
The large concrete basins of the formal rectangular and semicircular pools are still largely In evidence, and the path of the stream, complete with small clapper bridge, may still be traced. A wooden bridge leads to a circular island, and there is much evidence of imported plants and trees - bamboo abounds. The garden has only recently fallen into disuse; a retired officer living locally remembers it as a cultivated formal garden complete with stream and pools well into the 80's. His statement is supported by the presence of modem plastic pipes in some of the pools; these acted as soakaways. From this it is presumed that the stream was fed from a piped water supply, and that the garden could be reclaimed with little financial outlay other than labour costs.
External Changes
The effects of Henry Beveridge's extension and modernisation may best be seen from the lawn to the south of the castle. The windows on the ground floor and all the bay windows date from 1884, as does that part of the house to the east of the "Flag Room". The "crow-steps" of the original gable wall have disappeared. The concrete monstrosity housing the kitchens, bar and dining room was built by the Air Ministry.
On the north side, Beveridge added the present portico which allowed family members and guests a more dignified access to the rather splendid home that his interior changes had created. Note the motto above the portico - "Dum Spiro Spero" (While I Breathe, I Hope).