Home > Museums of Aberdeen >
Provost Skene's House Aberdeen
Provost Skene's House Aberdeen
Review tour facilities and history of Provost Skene's House Aberdeen. Includes photographs and details of the costume and painted gallery and Hanoverian troops during the Jacobite Rebellion.
Located in the heart of the city centre, Provost Skene's House is a rare surviving example of the early burgh architecture.
In Scotland a Mayor is called the Provost. So it is named after one of its owners, Sir George Skene, who was a wealthy merchant and Provost of Aberdeen from 1675 - 1685.
Previous owners include Alexander Knollis, a Laird, Bishop and Bailie Mathew Lumsden (cited in The Haunted North: Paranormal Tales from Aberdeen and the North East
by Graeme Milne).
Follow us on: Instagram
My new novel:
The Aberdeen skies are under attack from an enemy jet. It is spilling a strange yellow smoke. Minutes later, people start killing each other.
Former Royal Air Force Regiment Gunner Jason Harper witnesses this and then his wife, Pippa, telephones him, shouting that she needs him. They then get cut off. He sets straight out, unprepared for the nightmare that unfolds during his journey. Everyone seems to want to kill him.
Along the way, he pairs up with fellow survivor Imogen. But she enjoys killing the living dead far too much. Will she kill Jason in her blood thirst? Or will she hinder his journey through this zombie filled dystopian landscape to find his pregnant wife?
The Fence is the first in this series of post-apocalyptic military survival thrillers from the torturous mind of local horror and science fiction novel writer C.G. Buswell.
Buy the Paperback.
During the Jacobite rebellion it was used by Hanoverian troops as a billet. The Duke of Cumberland stayed here on his way to Culloden and for some time the building was known as Cumberland House.
Walter Duthie then Miss Elizabeth Duthie, who gifted the Duthie Park to our city, were owners and the building was used as place of refuge and renamed Victoria Lodging House (cited in The Haunted North).
This Dolphin Sculpture
painting by artist Lesley D McKenzie showcases the beautiful building:
In 1953 the Queen Mother opened it as a Museum.
There is a fine lawn and pond with fountain outside, with seats which makes this a perfect picnic spot on a lovely sunny day. The cafe sells a delicious selection of home bakes and a wide range of hot and cold drinks. The floor in the cafe has a glassed section through which can be seen the cellars with an assortment of period curiosities.
Toilets are situated next to the cafe and by the entrance.
Admission is free and you can take a free information sheet. A reasonably priced book about it is available to purchase.
There are some stairs to climb so this visit isn't suitable for disabled people.
The first room has a display of olden household curiosities.
Through to the Dining Room there is a fine example of a mahogany table dating back to 1790. The plastered ceilings are dedicated to Scotland, France and England with the plastered thistles, French de-lys and English roses.
The 17th Century Bedroom has the coat of arms of Sir George Skene plastered on the ceiling.
It is closed on a Sunday. The opening hours are:
Monday- Saturday, 10am - 5pm.
Please note though it is currently closed to the public due to the demolition of St Nicholas House.
Up a small flight of stairs is the Painted Gallery which has 10 painted panels of religious paintings which represent the life of Jesus Christ from Annunciation to Ascension. No one knows why the paintings were commissioned or when and why they were created, or indeed who painted the pictures.
Have you seen my beautiful golden retriever Lynne out and about in Aberdeen? Ask her for a high-five! She's a Bravehound PTSD assistance dog, so we'll often be in shops, restaurants, and the cinema together.
We've written a book where I talk about growing up in Aberdeen and then joining the army to be a medic and nurse, and developing military Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
I also talk about losing my son to suicide and the therapy I have had at Royal Cornhill Hospital and grief support groups in Aberdeen.
The author, Damien Lewis, said of Lynne:
"A powerful account of what one dog means to one man on his road to recovery. Both heart-warming and life-affirming. Bravo Chris and Lynne. Bravo Bravehound."
Buy the paperback
An army veteran moves his family back to his Aberdeenshire home, but his nightmare neighbour starts a battle of wits with him. Who will win this One Last War?
Buy this latest novel by local author C.G. Buswell on Kindle
Advertise Here from just £90.
In another room called the Costume Gallery is a display of uniforms ranging from military, nurses, Royal Marines, waitress, British Rail, Robert Gordon's Technical College, Cricketing, Boys Brigade, and Gordon Highlanders uniforms. There are also examples of Bay City Rollers trousers, a Bishops Cassock and a Teddy Boy Coat.
The next room has a range of Seaton Pottery on display.
Going downstairs brings you to a late 19th Century Nursery with china faced dolls, Victorian books and scraps, a dolls house and a rocking horse.
The next rooms are Bedrooms and the Regency Rooms.
On the way to the exit there is a wall mounted cache of flintlock muskets from 1758 - 1759. They were nicknamed Brown Bess by the troops.
There have been many reports of ghosts at Provost Skene's House. Many people, especially staff who have to lock up alone at night and in the dark have reported a presence in the building. Staff members have reported being followed by ghostly footsteps in the turret staircase.
Several visitors have reported being shoved or jostled by an unknown spirit and not being able to open the painted gallery door because someone or thing is pushing against it (cited in The Haunted North
by Graeme Milne.
The ghost of a woman has been sighted in the 17th century parlour room. The Haunted North
state that staff think she might be Elisabeth Aberdour, the wife of Mathew Lumsden. The same book cites a haunting in the old kitchen area with the figure wearing an old dress and crinoline bonnet.
During December the guides take visitors round the building on an atmospheric candlelit Christmas tour where they talk about how former occupants would have celebrated Christmas centuries ago and their customs and traditions. Booking is essential and the adult tour is only suitable for those aged over 13 years. Each candlelit tour takes about 40 minutes and there is a shorter tour available for children.
Tel: (01224) 641086
More Aberdeen Museums