Pollokshields Heritage

2010/11 Lecture Series

  • Thursday 28 October 2010
    • Ashley Page
    • Scottish Ballet

"Scottish Ballet is once again a force to be reckoned with, a company of fine dancers who deserve to be seen far and wide"...(The Herald)
"Page has redefined the choreography of nineteenth-century classic ballet ...You simply have to... take pride in the fact that this is our national company." (The Sunday Times)
With its stunning new headquarters at Tramway, including the largest rehearsal studio in Europe, Scottish Ballet is the first national company to locate in Pollokshields.

Ashley Page, formerly principal dancer with The Royal Ballet, now distinguished choreographer renowned for his individual blend of the classical and the contemporary, has secured the company's international status since his 2002 appointment as Artistic Director.

  • Wednesday 24 November 2010
    • Carol Foreman
    • Lost & Hidden Glasgow - An Architectural Tour

Lost & Hidden Glasgow - An Architectural Tour of some of the city's finest and most fascinating building, seen from the inside, the outside, from the air and from the past. Some gone forever, some well-known externally but rarely seen within.

Carol Foremanis the author of a number of books and articles about Glasgow's history, primarily through its buildings. Much of it is brought back to life through her meticulous research, to be viewed again in the profusion of images she has unearthed.

  • Thursday 27 January 2011
    • Doug Pritchard
    • The Documentation of Scottish and World Heritage

Head of the Digital Documentation Centre at The Glasgow School of Art, Doug Pritchard outlines his work on the Scottish 10 Project, creating digital models of Scotland’s five UNESCO-designated Word Heritages sites.

  • Wednesday 23 February 2011
    • Dr James Mcaulay
    • Charles Rennie Mackintosh :Arts and Crafts? Modernist?

Architectural historian James Macaulay talks about the issues raised through his research for his new book on the life and work of CRM.

  • Wednesday 23 March 2011
    • Dr Evelyn Silber
    • The Queen's Park Arena, Project

Dr Silber relates her adventures in her efforts to reinstate the original Queen's Park Bandstand to serve a contemporary audience.

  • Wednesday 27 April 2011, following the Pollokshields Heritage AGM
    • Professor Alan Dunlop
    • Thought Lines

Architect of the award-winning Halzelwood School in Dumbreck Road and of other notable landmark buildings in the City, Alan Dunlop discusses the complex design decisions involved in any new building project


2012/13 Lecture Series

  • Wednesday 14 November 2012
    • Gordon Barr
    • 'The Crown Jewels Of Maryhill'

The story of the Burgh Halls and how 20 stained-glass windows, in storage for over 40 years, became the centrepiece of a successful campaign to restore the buildings as an award-winning flexible community and business facility.

  • Tuesday 11 December 2012
    • Colin Mackay
    • 'Aye Gaun' Roon' In Circles - The Permanent Way Of The Weegies'

Colin explores Victorian Glasgow's fascination with circular railways, notably the Cathcart railway of Snooker Tam fame.

  • Thursday 17 January 2013
    • Elizabeth Moignard
    • 'How To Be A Hero'

Prof. Moignard takes a detailed look at the dining room of Alexander Thomson's Holmwood House, and the way in which John Flaxman's illustrations of Homer's 'Iliad' were used in its original decoration.

  • Tuesday 12 February 2013
    • Fergus Sutherland
    • 'Gartnavel Royal Hospital And Its Chapel'

In 1843, a new mental health hospital designed by Charles Wilson opened at Gartnavel, and a hospital chapel by Sir John James Burnet was built in 1904. Fergus Sutherland will explain how architecture in hospitals changed between the early Victorian and the Edwardian eras.

  • Thursday 14 March 2013
    • David Baird
    • 'Palm Beach - European Style In Florida'

A brief look at the influence of European architecture on the development of the grand villa in America's winter playground.

  • Wednesday 24 April 2013 (Following The AGM)
    • Christopher Platt
    • 'Building On'

Prof. Platt's talk will explore history, memory, authenticity and nostalgia in making contemporary architecture in historic settings, including Pollokshields.


2013/14 Lecture Series

  • Tuesday 19 November 2013
    • Dr Gordon Barr 
    • Cinemas of Glasgow's South Side 

Gordon completed his Ph.D. in Chemistry in 2003 at the University of Glasgow. His first degree was also from Glasgow - an M.Sc. in Chemistry in 1999 - and for many years he was a post-doctoral research fellow in theoretical crystallography. His other interests included books, architecture and history, and in April 2010 he was appointed as the first Heritage Development Officer for the Maryhill Burgh Halls Trust. Gordon gave a talk to Pollokshields Heritage last season on his work at Maryhill which was very well received. As promised, he returns to speak about his other passion – Glasgow’s cinemas, past and present.  How many of them can you recall….?

  • Tuesday 21 January 2014
    • Abigail Howkins
    • The Albert Drive project

Abigail is an art-school graduate and multi-skilled award-winning project producer, manager, filmmaker and trainer with wide experience in film and television production, community media and film education. She enjoys developing and producing multi-faceted creative projects and helping others do the same. For over a year she has been collaborating on ‘Albert Drive’, a large-scale creative project exploring the idea of ‘neighbour’ and what it means to live alongside each other from the perspective of a single street in Glasgow. Abigail will present an overview of her energetic engagement with Pollokshields.

  • Tuesday 18 February 2014
    • May Miles Thomas
    • The Devil's Plantation

May Miles Thomas grew up in Kinning Park and graduated from Glasgow School of Art where she studied design and photography. She then worked as a production designer, writer, editor, producer and director.  May began her career as a filmmaker at the BBC in the 80s, where she directed arts documentaries and music videos.  She formed the company Elemental Films with Owen Thomas in 1995, which is now based in Strathbungo. In 2007 May won the Creative Scotland Award to create ‘The Devil’s Plantation’, an interactive website and multi-media project which explores the secret geometry and ancient paths of Glasgow.  It has since won a BAFTA Award and in 2013 was reworked as a feature-length film selected for the Glasgow Film Festival.  May will give us an insight into this 5-year project and reveal the secrets of ‘The Devils Plantation’.

  • Tuesday 22 April 2014 after the AGM
    • Judith Bowers
    • No Turn Un-stoned

In 1997, archaeologist, historian, researcher, writer and burlesque enthusiast, Judith Bowers founded the Britannia Panopticon Music Hall Trust to help save the world's oldest surviving music hall rediscovered on Glasgow’s Trongate.  She has been with the project ever since and continues to work with her team to breathe life into this unique survivor as a living museum of music hall and popular entertainment.  Four years ago, Judith entertained PH with an unforgettable presentation. By popular demand she returns with her very personal performance of ‘No Turn Un-Stoned’.   Not to be missed !


2014/15 Lecture Series

  • Tuesday, 11th November 2014
    • Richard McBrearty
    • Scotland and the birth of world football

From Shanghai to São Paulo, Scotland has played a significant role in shaping the global game. Hear about the professional footballers and coaches who advanced the Scottish short passing game abroad. Richard will also tell the story of Scotland’s contribution through thousands of emigrants who travelled and settled across the world taking their love of football with them.

  • Tuesday, 20th January 2015
    • Gordon Barr
    • Glasgow’s Canals Unlocked

Gordon Barr, former Heritage Development Manager, Maryhill Burgh Halls, uses maps, archive photographs and the latest technology to explore and bring to life the past, present, and future of the three main canals that once served the city of Glasgow

  • Tuesday, 17th February 2015
    • Stafford Waters MBE
    • Travels in the Glasgow Style

Former drugs investigator, diplomat and European Commission expert on Organised Crime, Stafford Waters has been part of a team researching the many aspects of the Art Nouveau genre including the work of the famous Glasgow furnishing house Wylie and Lochhead during the seminal years of the Glasgow Style .Their furniture and interiors were the well-recognised commercial face of the style in Scotland and further afield. The company has an iconic status in Scotland and is still fondly remembered by many. Whilst the breadth of the team’s research encompasses far more than the activities of one company, here in the first presentation of their long awaited findings, the particular role of Wylie and Lochhead is illustrated and discussed.

  • Tuesday, 21st April 2015
    • Judith Bowers
    • Pickard the Prankster

A.E. Pickard - a Glasgow legend who has left a vast legacy of comical anecdotes from his bad behaviour and naughty pranks. Although he died in 1964 aged 90, his escapades live on and Judith Bowers from the Britannia Panopticon Music Hall (one of the venues that made Pickard a millionaire) will be telling a few selected tales from the papers and Panopticon archives. Giggle, guffaw and be appalled at the life of Pickard the Prankster


2015/16 Lecture Series

  • Tuesday, 17th November 2015
    • Holly  Rumble
    • Glasgow and the Turner Prize

From 1st October-17th January, Tramway will be hosting this year’s prestigious Turner Prize exhibition. Since 1984, this prize has been hosted at Tate Britain in London, and recently in alternate years at Liverpool, Gateshead and Derry-Londonderry. This is the first time the exhibition has been presented in Scotland. This lecture explores the high number of artists from Glasgow who have been nominated over the years (including three of the last five winners), and the role of the Turner Prize in the broader Glasgow arts scene.

  • Tuesday, 19th January 2016
    • Helen Kendrick
    • Historic Interiors; Pollokshields and Beyond

Helen Kendrick will give an illustrated talk looking behind the front doors of some of the city's most alluring buildings, in the Pollokshields area and throughout Glasgow, exploring their fascinating stories.  The talk will be based on Helen’s recent book Glasgow Interiors which charts the evolution of the city’s interiors from the mid-1800s to the 1930s. www.birlinn.co.uk/Glasgow-Interiors.html

  • Tuesday, 23rd February 2016
    • Ronnie Scott
    • When the Wild West came to the East End: Buffalo Bill in Glasgow 1891-92

Colonel William Cody, better known as Buffalo Bill, brought his spectacular Wild West show to Dennistoun in November 1891. For three months, the East End became home to his travelling band of rough riders, sharp shooters, native North Americans, numerous support workers and a small herd of buffalo. Glasgow historian Dr Ronnie Scott tells the full story, including the Colonel's visit to Ibrox Park and how Annie Oakley learned to bicycle on the slopes of Golfhill

  • Tuesday, 26th April 2016
    • Alastair Dinsmor
    • The City of Glasgow Police – 175 Years of History

The City of Glasgow Police has a fascinating history. From the City’s attempts to establish a police force in 1779 and again in 1789, it eventually obtained the Glasgow Police Act of 1800. The presentation outlines crimes and the detectives who caught the criminals through the 19th and into the 20th century. Innovations such as photographic criminal identification, early forensic crime scene examination and even the chequered cap band of many of the World’s police were pioneered in Glasgow. The principal events during the turbulent years of the 20th century shaped the City and its police force up to the final years before 1975 when it ceased as a separate entity and became part of Strathclyde Police.


2016/17 Lecture Series

  • Tuesday 15 November 2016
    • Ged O'Brien:
    • 'A Perfect Place to Play - Pollok Estate in the History of Sport'

      Sports historian Ged O'Brien, founder of the world's first national museum of football and author of Played in Glasgow, takes a look at the Pollok Estate from the unusual angle of sporting heritage. How did the Stirling Maxwell family ensure their place in the annals of sporting history, and in doing so help confirm Glasgow as the world capital of sport?

  • Tuesday 17 January 2017
    • Ewen Donaldson
    • '200 years of the Glasgow Botanic Gardens'

      In celebration of its bi-centenary, Ewen Donaldson looks at the history of the Glasgow Botanic Gardens from its foundation in 1817, including the development of its plant collections, its famous glasshouses and layout on the current Kelvinside site. The history of the Kibble Palace glasshouse and its recent restoration is also covered. The talk looks at the extensive plant collections, with emphasis on the environmental education focus of the Gardens.

  • Tuesday 21 February 2017
    • Graham Sutherland
    • 'The Citizens Theatre in the 21st Century'

      Based in the Gorbals, the Citizens Theatre has enjoyed an extraordinary 138 years of entertaining Glasgow audiences, and has launched the careers of many of the UK's leading actors, including Pierce Brosnan, Gary Oldman, David Hayman and recent Oscar-winner Mark Rylance. However, the Category 'B' listed building is deteriorating and hampering the future ambitions of the organisation. A £20.8 million capital redevelopment project has been launched to restore and expand what is one of Scotland's oldest and most iconic working theatres. Graham, Head of Production at the Citizens, will talk about the building's unique heritage which will see the renovation of the splendid Victorian auditorium with its many original features, as well as Scotland's oldest and most complete surviving stage machinery and 19th century paint frames - elements of which are the only remaining examples of their kind in the world and which are still in use today.

  • Tuesday 25 April 2017 (following the Pollokshields Heritage AGM)
    • Rachel Kacir
    • 'The Tenement House'

      Rachel will give an illustrated talk providing a fascinating insight into life in Glasgow in the early 20th century. The talk will chart the history of tenements in the city, before focusing on the National Trust for Scotland's 'Tenement House'. This four-room house in Gamethill was lived in by Miss Agnes T award for over 50 years from 1911 until 1965. It retains many of its original fixtures and fittings, including a cast-iron range and recess beds. Miss Toward didn't like to throw things out, so there is also a large collection of her personal belongings in the House, including books, textiles, costume jewellery, magazines and recipes. Rachel will show images from the collection during the talk.


2017/18 Lecture Series

  • Tuesday, 14th November 2017
    • Elisabeth Viguie Culshaw

Elisabeth Viguie Culshaw of the Lansdowne House of Stencils is a stencilling expert based in Glasgow. She developed an interest in historic schemes after gaining the Christie’s Decorative Arts diploma after moving to Glasgow from her native France. She has specialised in the Art Nouveau period for over 27 years. She works on private commissions and exhibition work. Her recreation for Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s ‘The House for an Art Lover’ has become an iconic image for many Art lovers around the World. She recently spent 16 months recreating a George Walton property in Dunblane and this year she has been involved with the centenary of 78 Derngate, the only English Mackintosh property.

She lives in Glasgow with her family where she researches and teaches stencilling and paint techniques. She regularly give talks and runs #thebigrose project.

    • From Roses to Squares, interior stencilling from the Turn of the Century to the Deco period

Elisabeth will be talking about the evolution of designs in interior stencilling from the turn of the century to the 1920’s taking examples from the schemes she has been involved in. She will look at trends and fashions and show off schemes designed by some of the best artist for the well to do new “entrepreneurs” of Victorian/Edwardian times and later. She will describe the challenges she has to face when recreating some of those schemes and give an insight into domestic stencilling in Glasgow. She will also be able to discuss local sources and give basic pointers on personal projects

  • Tuesday, 16th January 2018
    • Sally White

Sally White is a Director and Secretary of the Alexander Thomson Society. She has a background in architecture and landscape, and is a former Property Manager of Holmwood, Thomson’s beautiful villa in Cathcart. She is also the co-author of the Society’s project for the transformation of Thomson’s Category ‘A’ listed former Caledonia Road Church in the Gorbals.

    • 2017 - Alexander Thomson Bicentennial Year

Sally will be looking back over the Bicentenary events of 2017 and the scope of the Alexander Thomson Society’s achievements in extending awareness of ‘Greek Thomson’ and his architecture. The challenge now facing the Society is how to build on this past year to achieve our aims and respond to the interest that has been generated.

  • Tuesday, 20th February 2018
    • John Yellowlees

A graduate in geography and urban design, John Yellowlees spent seventeen years in the Departments of the Environment and Transport mostly in London before joining the railways in Scotland where he latterly led ScotRail's ‘Adopt a Station’ programme before retiring last year into an honorary role. A link between the two parts of his career was provided by Michael Portillo for whom he worked thirty years ago on transport for London Docklands, then in recent years provided support on filming the Scottish legs of Great British Railway Journeys.

    • Going Round in Circles

John will look at history of the Caledonian Railway and the development of Glasgow's South Side.

  • Tuesday, 24th April 2018
    • Karen Mailley-Watt and Rachael Purse

After meeting at work in the Heritage Sector, Karen and Rachael’s friendship blossomed over a love of tea and old stuff. Both women have a huge amount of passion for the celebration and promotion of Scottish heritage, culture and history. So much so, both women were awarded scholarships in 2016 to continue their research at PhD level at the University of Glasgow and The Glasgow School of Art on separate projects.

    • The History Girls Frae Scotland

Karen and Rachael will delve into the fascinating history of the South-Side through its female inhabitants. Rachael and Karen will discuss the colourful, energetic and powerful female personalities of Glasgow’s Southside including artists, designers as well as activists and wealthy philanthropists, in order to create a HERstory of this side of the city.


2017/18 Lecture Series

  • Tuesday, 13th November 2018
    • Fergus Sutherland

Fergus is a heritage consultant with almost thirty-five years’ experience in archaeological and historical research and in developing outreach strategies for both the public and private sectors. He graduated in archaeology from the University of Glasgow in 1984 and, after a few years in the trenches, started his own heritage consultancy in 1989. Since then he has worked on over three hundred projects ranging from prehistoric to industrial landscapes and from medieval castles to 20th century modernist buildings, in places as diverse as the Highlands of Scotland and the United Arab Emirates. His first love, however, is the history of Glasgow where he has been involved in surveying, researching and excavating throughout the city, acts as an advisor to the Glasgow City Heritage Trust, and is a founder of the Glasgow’s Gilded Age project. He also works regularly on television as a contributor to STV’s The People’s History Show.

    • 1938 and all that

Join Fergus Sutherland to mark eighty years since the Empire Exhibition of 1938 in Bellahouston Park closed its doors to its last customer. Even after all that time, it remains one of the most fondly remembered events ever held in Glasgow. With twelve million visitors, it was also the most successful in the history of Scotland, despite the fact that it rained almost non-stop for the whole summer. The architect, the famous Thomas Tait, shocked everyone by choosing to build what was the country’s first modern town, decades before it was to become common practice. And it was the centrepiece of his design which still captures everyone’s imagination today, the Tower of Empire, a.k.a. Tait’s Tower. It was 140 metres high and rose like a beacon over the metropolis, a vision of a bright, clean future for the old, black, industrial city. But war intervened and, for the second time in thirty years, the lights went out all over Europe, destroying Tait’s futuristic vision of what Glasgow might have been. Or did it?…

  • Tuesday, 15th January 2019
    • Gerald Blaikie

Gerald Blaikie is a retired Chartered Surveyor who spent 32 years working with Glasgow City Assessor’s Department, creating and maintaining detailed records of old and new properties entered in the city’s Valuation Roll and Electoral Register. He has a keen interest in Pollokshields and surrounding areas, using his Scotcities website to share knowledge gathered both from his work experiences and by his continuing urban exploration.

    • Pollokshields a Personal Perspective

Gerald’s illustrated talk will be a personal perspective of Pollokshields, examining the origins of the carefully planned Garden Suburb and exploring the evolution of the architectural styles of the villas, tenements and public buildings contained within its boundaries.  He will also venture off the beaten track, exposing a few unknown facts and some ‘out of the way’ features of the area that may or not be common knowledge.

  • Tuesday, 19th February 2019
    • Nan Smith

Nan spent 17 years working as a guide at Pollok House with the National Trust for Scotland during which time she developed a great interest not only in the Maxwell family and local history, but also in the historical characters in many of the wonderful paintings kept there, especially of the Hapsburg family, rulers of Spain for 200 years. Although now retired from the trust, she still maintains a great interest in Pollok House and is there regularly as a volunteer guide. She participates in all sorts of activities within the house including costumed murder mysteries and costumed presentations.

    • Pollok House and the Maxwells

Nan will take us through the history of the Maxwells of Pollok and their connections from the 13th century up to the present day. She will also bring us up to date with is happening in and around Pollok House in the present day.

  • Tuesday, 23rd April 2019
    • John Moore

John Moore retired in 2017 after nearly 40 years’ service at Glasgow University Library where he ended his career as Collections Manager. He has had a lifelong passion for maps and has studied and written extensively on the history of Scottish cartography for more than thirty years. He is the author of Glasgow: mapping the city (2105) which was short-listed for a Saltire Society non-fiction award and followed this up last year with The Clyde: mapping the river.

    • Mapping Pollokshields and Glasgow

A look at how the city and the suburb were depicted in old plans


2019/20 Lecture Series

  • Tuesday, 12th November 2019
    • Dr Eleanor Herring

Dr Eleanor Herring is a lecturer in Design History and Theory at Glasgow School of Art. She has a long-standing interest in state and government-sponsored design artefacts and schemes which imagine a better future or ideal world, and how such examples have been accepted, rejected, challenged or appropriated by the public.

    • Street Furniture Design: Contesting Modernism in Post-War Britain

Drawing on research published in Street Furniture Design (Bloomsbury 2016), this talk will explore how the design of street furniture became the site of a fierce struggle in post-war Britain, which exposed deep-seated anxieties about class, taste and power.

  • Tuesday, 14th January 2020
    • Niall Murphy

Niall Murphy is Deputy Director of Glasgow City Heritage Trust and a conservation accredited architect. He is heavily involved in heritage, conservation and community issues in Glasgow, being Chair of Govanhill Baths Building Preservation Trust, Vice Chair of Pollokshields Trust, a Glasgow Urban Design Panellist and member of the Development Management Working Group for the Scottish Government’s Planning Review. In 2016 Niall helped secure Government funding for the ‘Make Your Mark’ East Pollokshields and Port Eglinton Charrette. He has also won a number of awards for his work.

    • Henry Edward Clifford (1852-1932) - Pollokshields’ Architect

One of the key architects from Glasgow’s Golden Age, Clifford really should be better known. His Burgh Hall, villas and tenements in Pollokshields have long been admired but there are other sides to Clifford and he is that rare beast, the Glaswegian architect with a European reputation. Join Niall Murphy, Deputy Director of Glasgow City Heritage Trust, to find out more.

  • Tuesday, 18rd February 2020
    • Nan Steele

Nan spent 17 years as a guide at Pollok House with the National Trust for Scotland during. While there she developed a great interest not only in the Maxwell family and local history, but also in the historical characters in many of the wonderful paintings kept there. Although now retired from the trust, she still maintains a great interest in Pollok House and regularly appears both as a volunteer guide and a participant in all sorts of activities including costumed murder mysteries and presentations.

    • Sir John Stirling Maxwell

The talk will cover Sir John’s life and his many achievements in and around Glasgow and beyond . In some ways he is a forgotten man and I will hope to remedy that and bring his memory alive.

  • Tuesday, 21st April 2020
    • Colin Mackie

Colin Mackie was one of the research officers on the original Southern Necropolis Research Project back in 1988. The pioneering project being the Gorbals then contribution to the City of Culture celebrations. Although the project ran out in 1991, the current Friends of Southern Necropolis group strive to continue to preserve and promote the many unique assets of the Gorbals very own "City of the Dead". Colin Mackie (aka The Happy Reaper) is the community history co-ordinator for the group.

    • The Southern Necropolis

The Southern Necropolis is the final resting place of approximately 250,000 contributors to the rich historical legacy of the Gorbals, and Glasgow. Buried within the three sections of the cemetery are the likes of, Sir Thomas Lipton, Allan Glen, Alexander Greek Thomson and also the legendary White Lady Monument (walk around her three times, speaking her name or you may be turned to stone).