This week sees another milestone in the rebuilding of the Botanic Cottage, with the completion of work on building the stone walls. When the chimney pots are added, it will be a significant moment, as the cottage will be at its full height, and all of the hard work of the stonemasons over the last six months will be complete. Anyone who visits the Demonstration Garden will see how much progress has been made in the last couple of months, with the full shape of the building now visible, from the historic cottage in the centre, to the newly built wings on either side, which contain classrooms where there would once have been garden outbuildings hidden behind the wing walls.
The team from Maxi Construction and Conservation Masonry have had to work through the winter to make sure that we could reach this stage, and now, as spring soon turns to summer, the cottage will move into its next phase, with the additon of the main roof, windows and doors, the lime render on the exterior and then fitting out the interiors. Already, when one stands in the different rooms of the cottage, it feels like a friendly, welcoming place – this is not a cold, soulless modern building, rather, it is one which is rich in history and which has been alive with work and family life for centuries, and the future use of the cottage will reflect this.
We are now actively planning for when the cottage opens this autumn, and are looking forward to welcoming visitors into what we hope will be a wonderful addition to the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.