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Canongate Venture, 5, New Street, Edinburgh

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Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved. © Copyright and database right 2019.

General Details and Location

Name of Building
Canongate Venture
Other Name(s)
5, New Street, Edinburgh
Planning Authority
Divisional Area
Reference No
Listing Category
OS Grid Ref
NT 26235 73772
Location Type
HS Reference No


2-storey former school building with Queen Anne detailing, shaped gables and square-plan bellcote with columns supporting slated, swept roof and gilded cockerel weathervane. Coursed bull-faced sandstone with red sandstone dressings. Base course; eaves cornice. Long and short quoins; raised margins; tabbed surrounds. Built on sloping site, ground made up at N with coped, random coursed bull-faced sandstone retaining wall below playground level (iron railings over); windows to East Market Street containing series of offices and workshops.

Built by Robert Wilson, architect for Edinburgh School Board, as North Canongate Infant School. The building became a school of building in 1943, offices in 1968 and the Canongate Venture, housing a variety of small businesses and workshops, in 1981. The central galleried hall remains virtually unchanged and is a good, typical example of Board School design of the period. (Historic Scotland)
Building Dates
Robert Wilson

Category of Risk and Development History

Category of Risk
Exemptions to State of Risk
Field Visits
26/10/2011, 19/5/2015
Development History
March 2010: Nominated by member of public The Canongate Venture, 5 New Street. Site is planned for redevelopment into a hotel/ conference centre
January 2011: Developers Mountgrange are in administration and overall project being revised at present.
October 2011: External inspection finds the building remains largely intact, but is now vacant. The tree growing at the north east corner of the roof is of concern. Listed Building Consent for the demolition of the building was conditionally approved July 2008 ref: 07/01208/LBC. The former school was utilised during Edinburgh Festival as a arts exhibition space.
15 March 2013: Urban Realm reports revised plans for a mixed use development on the Caltongate site have been drawn up. The article notes that the revised plans will retian Canongate Venture, Sailors Ark and Jeffrey Street Arches. The plans will be displayed as part of a public consultation ahead of likely lodging of formal applications later this year.
19 September 2013: Listed Building Consent a time extension for the full demolition of the site was conditionally granted Apr 2013 ref:13/00100/LBC. Listed Building Consent for alterations to the building to allow for retention and re-use is currently being sought ref: 13/03399/LBC.
9 October 2013: Frank Ross, economy convenor at Edinburgh City Council, outlines in article in the Edinburgh Evening News (Building Edinburgh's Future) a plan to commission a study of 12 priority sites believed to have potential for short-term transformation of which the former Caltongate Development site is one. The article notes the difficulties development projects have in securing financing in the current economic climate. The study is to explore options for public sector intervention to unlock the development potential of the sites, a number of which already have planning permission in place.
25 February 2015: Local planners note the property is now owned by Artisan and is being utilised as a site office for the New Waverley Development. Restoration of the property is anticipated as part of the New Waverley Developement.
19 May 2015: External inspection finds building works are on site. Moved to Restoration in Progress.
13 January 2017: Local planners advise the building is in temporary use as a site office for the development area adjacent. Canongate Venture itself is anticipated to be a later phase of conversion to form a hotel.
25 February 2019: Local planners note conversion works are underway. Moved to Restoration in Progress.

Guides to Development

Conservation Area
Old Town
Planning Authority Contact
PAC Telephone Number
0131 529 3901


Current Availability
Not Available
Appointed Agents
Occupancy Type
Present/Former Uses
Name of Owners
Type of Ownership

Information Services

Additional Contacts/Information Source
Online Resources
Original Entry Date
Date of Last Edit