(Royal Musselburgh Golf Club)

Prestongrange, now the Royal Musselburgh Golf Club
©2022 Gazetteer for Scotland

Prestongrange, now the Royal Musselburgh Golf Club

Situated amongst parkland a half-mile (1 km) west of Prestonpans and 3 miles (4 km) east of Musselburgh is the long Baronial mansion of Prestongrange. Much of what can be seen today is the work of William Henry Playfair (1789 - 1857), undertaken in two stages in 1830 and 1850. However, the earliest part of the house was a painted ceiling, dated to 1581, which was uncovered in the hall in 1962 and subsequently moved to Merchiston Castle (Edinburgh). The history of the estate can be traced back to the 12th C., when the lands were granted to the monks of Newbattle Abbey.

After the Reformation they passed to Mark Kerr (c.1522-84), Abbot and later Commendator of the abbey, who most-likely built the first house. The remains of a painted mural, including Ker's monogram, have been discovered in one of the former bedrooms. In 1622, the property was sold by Robert Ker, the 2nd Earl of Lothian (d.1624) to Sir Alexander Morison (d.1631), a Lord of Session, who extended the house in 1626 and whose family retained the house until 1746. It then passed to the Grant family and it was Sir James Grant Suttie who commissioned Playfair's work.

In 1924, the Royal Musselburgh Golf Club was looking to move from its home beside Musselburgh Race Course and was able to secure a lease on Prestongrange. In 1958, the house was bought for the golf club by a miner's welfare society, given that most of the club's members were miners. The house suffered major internal modifications in 1962, but most of Playfair's ceilings and chimney-pieces survive.

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