Pollokshields Heritage Heritage Trail Two 

The earliest masterplan for Pollokshields was prepared by David Rhind (1808 - 1883), an Edinburgh based architect who had just built the Scott Monument in George Square. Sir John Maxwell commissioned him to draw up a feuing plan for the family’s land around the old Shields steading.

Feuing Map

David Rhind trained in London, in the office of Augustus Charles Pugin who, in turn, trained under John Nash. Rhind was also friendly with another key Edinburgh architect, James Gillespie Graham, who drew up plans for both the Moray Estate in Edinburgh and Birkenhead near Liverpool. What is interesting about Graham’s plans is the contrast between decisively urban geometrical layouts of streets, crescents and circuses of terraces and tenements contrasting with a more picturesque and arcadian setting of villas in drives through parkland, all possibly inspired Nash’s work at Regent’s Park.

Loudoun's MapIn 1845 a group of lawyers who formed the Kelvinside Estate Company commissioned the London architect Decimus Burton to draw up a feuing plan for their lands. Burton, who had participated in Nash’s development of Regent’s Park, drew up a plan for a sequence of terraces addressing Great Western Road behind which were villas disposed along sinuous lines.

Rhind appears to have picked up on these characteristics in his plan for Pollokshields. His scheme recognizes the variable topography of the estate and disposes the housing types accordingly. The plan is split east west along Shields Road. To the east, on the flatter land bounded by the curve of the Barrhead Railway, Rhind laid out rows of tenements and terraces focused on a north south axis of crescents addressing a sequence of communal gardens. A similar formality is introduced on the western side of Shields Road with an east west sequence of terraces focused on an outward facing circus. The rest of the western half of the layout is given over entirely to villas arranged along drives that flow and curve over the estate’s undulating landscape.

The idea of escaping from the overcrowded city to an idyllic villa set in an arcadian landscape, being Roman in origin, represents a departure from Scottish urbanism; however, it appealed to the aspirations of Glasgow’s anxious ridden, but increasingly prosperous, middle class and the developers of Pollokshields tapped into this.

There is little doubt that the early villas were inspired by John Claudius Loudon’s 1834 Encyclopedia of Cottage, Farm and Villa Architecture (see illustration opposite).

In reality very little of Rhind’s plan was executed but the principal of his East - West split was maintained.

East Pollokshields became even more densely built up with Rhind’s large communal gardens reduced to the much smaller Maxwell Square. West Pollokshields was given over entirely to villas becoming the largest and most complete example of a Victorian garden suburb in Scotland, if not the UK.

Francis Steel Colledge (1844-1923)

Responsible for the later feuing of Pollokshields, the line engineering of the Cathcart District Railway and station buildings such as Maxwell Park Station.

A land surveyor by trade, he also undertook civil engineering and architectural work. In 1874 he went into partnership with James Brand as Colledge & Brand and in 1876 they were joined by Thomas Wharrie. His father William Colledge was a factor for Pollok Estates and and lived at Haggs. Wharrie, Colledge & Brand were responsible for the feuing of Pollok, Pollokshields and parts of Govan. Wharrie Colledge & Brand was dissolved on 30th April 1897 afterwards continuing as Wharrie & Colledge. When Wharrie retired in 1901 Colledge took over sole ownership and ran it under the same name. He was a Roads Trustee for Renfrewshire and a member of the Pollokshaws Company of Volunteers. Francis Steel Colledge died at Littlewood, Pollokshields on 6th March 1923 aged 79.