A recent photograph of Broomfield – Click to enlarge


Photo: W Henderson, 25/07/2009

A recent photograph of Broomfield
Click photograph to enlarge


Broomfield is located near the foreshore at Silverknowes, a little to the west of Muirhouse and north-east of Silverknowe, two other large houses.


Broomfield seems to have been bought by William Wilson in 1849. He was a lawyer, and by 1871 was a Writer to the Signet. In 1881 (presumably after Mr Wilson died) his Trustees sold it to William Henry Haig, and in 1896 it passed to Hugh Anthony de Courcy Haig. William Henry Haig was the eldest brother of World War I commander Field Marshall Douglas Haig, who became Earl Haigexternal link in 1919. Their father was John Haig, a whisky distiller.

It was sold on in 1936 to Edinburgh Corporation along with the ground around it. It then passed to the Scottish Gas Board and in 1964 and then to their successors the British Gas Corporation before becoming the Commodore Hotel in the 1960s.


Broomfield – Click to enlarge


Photo: D King, 27/01/2005

Click photograph to enlarge

It is not clear who the architect was or the exact date of construction. It has been suggested that the building was designed by one of the leading architects of the time, David Bryceexternal link, but the building does not appear in lists of buildings known to be designed by him. His work did include many large private houses.

Recent History

Broomfield is now the Backpackers Inn, having for some years previously been the Commodore Hotel. The building was substantially extended to the east and altered while it was a hotel to provide extra bedrooms and other facilities, but the exterior of the original building remains.

Access to it was improved in the mid-20th century by the construction of Marine Drive, a new road that passed just to the south of it.

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