The Grangemuir Estate:
Grangemuir Estate has a colourful past.
Records date back to the 16th Century. In 1534, Prior John Rowle feued Easter Grangemuir to George Borthwick. And by 1543, Wester Grangemuir was granted to William Dishington of Ardross.
By the late 18th Century, Thomas Bruce, a Director of the Hercules Insurance Company, had bought both portions of the estate.
In 1807, he built the first part of the mansion.
Originally of classic French design, it was built symetrically, with a central staircase entrance.
This building replaced an earlier house which stood around 200 yards to the south, which was said to be haunted by a ghost, 'Baff Barefoot' manifesting itself in the sound of unshod feet running through the rooms of the house.
When the new house was constructed, no stones were used from the old building to ensure the ghost wasn't brought with them.
The house and attached estate was bought by Walter Irvine, a Scot who owned sugar estates in Tobago and Luddington House in Surrey.
It then passed, along with 2,700 acres of surrounding land, to Irvine's daughter, Elizabeth, following her marriage on 24th November 1824 to Lord William Robert Keith Douglas of Dunimo, the fourth son of Sir James Douglas, 4th Baronet of Kelhead and younger brother of both Charles Douglas, 6th Marquess of Queensberry and John Douglas, 7th Marquess of Queensberry.
In 1830, the bay window and extension were added, considerably increasing the size of the property, but in doing so, changing the classical French symmetry of the building.