Myres Castle history is interleaved with that of nearby Falkland Palace with present-day castle construction dating to 1530. The castle and magnificent Scottish garden are now operated as a private conference centre with lodging.
Its history is intertwined with the nearby Falkland Palace, since Myres was the hereditary home of the Macers, or Sergeants of Arms, of Falkland. The word myres is associated with a boggy place; in fact, Myres Castle is located within fields and policies with marginal drainage. Further drainage improvements to the fields were made as late as the 1970s. There exists an attractive pond in front of the Castle, which also serves to collect runoff. The lands of the present Myres estate originally part of the extensive properties of the Earl of Fife, the Myres portion being conveyed by marriage to Robert, Duke of Albany. In the year 1425, Murdoch, the son of Robert, forfeited the holding to the crown. From that time until the 16th century, the tenant farmers rents are recording in the rolls of the Royal Exchequer, indicating continuing ownership of the king.
The castle itself originated circa 1530 as a Z-plan fortress, perhaps designed by its owner John Scrimgeour, and has an ochre harled exterior with some exposed grey ashlar stonework on its square tower added in 1616. The tower is adorned with garland stonework, heraldic relief with carved initials and a parapet. The basement course appears to be an older, possibly 14th-century piece, due to its Romanesque barrel-vaulted construction, and clear architecture of a medieval kitchen. Further modifications took place in the 17th and 18th centuries. In 1872 the building was repaired and slightly remodelled, Scots Baronial touches being added by James Campbell Walker.
At the property entrance there is a detached Victorian stone gatehouse, which was inhabited as a residence up to at least 1997. The prize of Myres is a spectacular walled garden featuring gigantic topiary yew trees, elaborate herbaceous borders and a small fishpond. The garden walls exceed three metres in height and are probably of 17th-century origin.
Myres is set amongst 18ha of gardens, farmlands and policies. The Fairlie family has been associated with Myres for some time. There are Fairlie memorabilia at Myres including shooting diaries as far back as 1903. A recording is noted in the year 1915 that James Ogilvy Reginald Fairlie, Chamberlain to His Majesty, resident of Myres was killed in action in World War I. His brother was the distinguished Scot architect Reginald Fairlie. The castle was the home of the Fairlie family up until 1997; moreover, the policies, or wooded perimeter, were augmented with the prudent planting by Captain Reginald Fairlie in the early 1980s. At present Myres serves as an exclusive let and wedding venue.References:
The Old Town Hall of Wrocław is one of the main landmarks of the city. The Old Town Hall's long history reflects developments that have taken place in the city since its initial construction. The town hall serves the city of Wroclaw and is used for civic and cultural events such as concerts held in its Great Hall. In addition, it houses a museum and a basement restaurant.
The town hall was developed over a period of about 250 years, from the end of 13th century to the middle of 16th century. The structure and floor plan changed over this extended period in response to the changing needs of the city. The exact date of the initial construction is not known. However, between 1299 and 1301 a single-storey structure with cellars and a tower called the consistory was built. The oldest parts of the current building, the Burghers’ Hall and the lower floors of the tower, may date to this time. In these early days the primary purpose of the building was trade rather than civic administration activities.
Between 1328 and 1333 an upper storey was added to include the Council room and the Aldermen’s room. Expansion continued during the 14th century with the addition of extra rooms, most notably the Court room. The building became a key location for the city’s commercial and administrative functions.
The 15th and 16th centuries were times of prosperity for Wroclaw as was reflected in the rapid development of the building during that period. The construction program gathered momentum, particularly from 1470 to 1510, when several rooms were added. The Burghers’ Hall was re-vaulted to take on its current shape, and the upper story began to take shape with the development of the Great Hall and the addition of the Treasury and Little Treasury.
Further innovations during the 16th century included the addition of the city’s Coat of arms (1536), and the rebuilding of the upper part of the tower (1558–59). This was the final stage of the main building program. By 1560, the major features of today’s Stray Rates were established.
The second half of the 17th century was a period of decline for the city, and this decline was reflected in the Stray Rates. Perhaps by way of compensation, efforts were made to enrich the interior decorations of the hall. In 1741, Wroclaw became a part of Prussia, and the power of the City diminished. Much of the Stray Rates was allocated to administering justice.
During the 19th century there were two major changes. The courts moved to a separate building, and the Rates became the site of the city council and supporting functions. There was also a major program of renovation because the building had been neglected and was covered with creeping vines. The town hall now has several en-Gothic features including some sculptural decoration from this period.
In the early years of the 20th century improvements continued with various repair work and the addition of the Little Bear statue in 1902. During the 1930s, the official role of the Rates was reduced and it was converted into a museum. By the end of World War II Town Hall suffered minor damage, such as aerial bomb pierced the roof (but not exploded) and some sculptural elements were lost. Restoration work began in the 1950s following a period of research, and this conservation effort continued throughout the 20th century. It included refurbishment of the clock on the east facade.