Alexanders the great

The Red House, Bridge of Allan
The Red House, Bridge of Allan

This stunning mock tudor house in Bridge of Allan is brimming with history – and has a strong link to Falkirk.

Built in 1899, it is believed to have been built for one of the Alexanders of Falkirk – a name that is still famous today, thanks to the success of their coachbuilding empire.

The house is a status symbol of Sir James’ success. This after all, is the man who brought Cleopatra’s Needle back from Egypt. Current owners Andrew and Maura Baddon explain that the adventurous businessman actually wanted the obelisk to be placed in the local park, but was told such an important piece would have to go to London.

The house retains a wealth of period features that connect it to its illustrious past, but Maura, says the house has a lovely feel to it.

“I always had a good feeling about it – it’s a very cosy house,” she said.

One of her favourite places is the fantastic entrance hall, which boasts incredible wooden panelling, a fireplace with decorative timber surround, exposed timber beams and a wonderful staircase leading up to the first floor landing.

Off this is a large family room, added in the 1970s, which offers a great entertaining space. Its fireplace has a beautiful traditional timber mantel and surround.

Windows offering three aspects provide lovely views over the garden. And what a garden it is! Occupying over two acres, the gorgeous, mature gardens have an abundance of shrubs and trees, including an area of private woodland and a patio terrace. There’s even an outdoor swimming pool.

“I’m not a gardener but I’ve learned a lot about gardens since we came here,” said Maura. “Over the years we have gradually identified most of the plants in the garden – just one or two are still unknown. I will miss the garden very much.”

Directly across the entrance hall is the split level sitting room. The upper level is part of the original house, with exposed ceiling beams and a bay window overlooking the garden. It too contains a beautiful fireplace, supposedly dating back to the era of King George III.

The lower level of the sitting room has full height windows and a large sliding door onto the terrace, while the dining room also has traditional ceiling plasterwork.

There is an ample kitchen and utility room, while upstairs are two bathrooms and five double bedrooms.

Bordering Bridge of Allan’s golf course, the house offers complete privacy in a very central location.