House of the Binns
History, tourist information, and nearby accommodation
In 1630 Dalyell commissioned a series of ornate plaster ceilings to mark a planned visit by Charles I. The beautifully decorated ceiling of the King's Room is one of the highlights of the interiors at Binns. The house was remodelled in the 1740s by Sir Robert Dalyell, who extended the building to the south with a dining room and morning room. Sir Robert's son James called in architect William Burn to remodel the house yet again, transforming it into a fashionable mansion in Gothic baronial style.
The collection of family mementoes is well worth exploring. You can learn the exciting tale of General Tam Dalyell, who was imprisoned in the Tower of London but managed to escape and make his way to Russia. General Dalyell is perhaps best known as the founder of the Royal Scots Greys (later to become the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards).
'Bloody Tam' also introduced thumbscrews into Scotland, and you can see an example of this gruesome instrument of torture. Perhaps the thumbscrews were the idea of the devil, with whom General Tam was said to converse.
Another famous family member was Sir John Graham Dalyell, who taught Charles Darwin. Scientific drawings made by Sir John are on display, as are letters from Captain James Dalyell, who was scalped by native Americans while fighting in the American colonies.
Aside from the ornate interiors and family collections, there is a 14th-century bakehouse oven surviving from an earlier house on the site, and a secret underground tunnel.
The house is set in lovely parkland, with trails to explore. One trail leads to a tower on a nearby hill, where you can get wonderful views to Blackness Castle and beyond.
About House of the Binns
Address: Linlithgow, Lothian, Scotland, EH49 7NA
Attraction Type: Historic House
Location: 15 m (24 km) W Edinburgh, off A904
Website: House of the Binns
Phone: 01506 834255
National Trust for Scotland
OS: NT051 782
Photo Credit: David Ross and Britain Express
NEARBY HISTORIC ATTRACTIONS
Heritage Rated from 1- 5 (low-exceptional) on historic interest
Blackness Castle - 1.1 miles (Castle)
Hopetoun House - 2.4 miles (Historic House)
Church of St Michael, Linlithgow - 3.1 miles (Historic Church)
Linlithgow Palace - 3.1 miles (Castle)
Annet House Museum and Garden - 3.2 miles (Museum)
Kinneil House - 4.5 miles (Historic Building)
Kinneil Museum - 4.5 miles (Museum)
Newliston - 4.7 miles (Historic House)
Nearest Accommodation to House of the Binns:
Nearest Self Catering Cottages
Nearest Bed and Breakfasts
Nearest Tourist Information Centre ('as the crow flies')
Airport Tourist Information Centre
Edinburgh International Airport
Tel: 01314 733 690