Basic Biographical Details

Name: Pilkington & Bell
Designation: Architectural practice
Started: 1867
Ended: 1877
Bio Notes: Frederick Thomas Pilkington was born in 1832, probably in Stamford, the son of architect Thomas Pilkington who had set up architectural practice there. In 1838 Thomas was burnt out, and he had moved to Barn Hill by 1842; by 1849 he was in Bourne with his own brickworks. Frederick Thomas first trained with his father and was then articled in London for one year, returning to his father's firm thereafter. The family moved to Edinburgh in 1854, apparently because of a lawsuit; Thomas opened an office at 10 Dundas Street and set up house at 9 South-East Circus Place. The firm exhibited designs at the RSA in that year under the name of T Pilkington & Son but Frederick's younger brother, James, returned to Stamford c.1857 after two years at the University of Edinburgh. Frederick studied mathematics under Professor Kelland, passed his exams in 1858 and was Hamilton prizewinner in Logic, but did not bother to graduate. He signed the University Matriculation Register 1856/7 as of Stamford. In 1858 he married with a house at Mary Cottage, Trinity and in 1859 he built Inchglas, Broich Terrace, Crieff (as a weekend house?); he never lived there but his father was living there in 1860. About 1859-60 the practice was based at 6 North Charlotte Street which was his father's house and office, but in the latter year house and office were moved to 24 George Street. In or about the same year, Frederick became friendly with John Cowan, the paper-maker of Penicuik, whose diary records a continental tour undertaken with Pilkington in the early 1860s. On 10 March 1861 Pilkington's first wife died in childbirth, and he married Elizabeth Cropley from Ely five months later, first with a house at 27 St Bernard Crescent and then at 14 Cumin Place later in the same year. By that date Pilkington had progressed from exhibiting at the RSA to actually building a series of ambitious geometrically planned churches, mostly with tall lucarned spires, boldly scaled naturalistic sculpture, and sometimes polychrome masonry, all of Ruskinian inspiration; in Venetian Romanesque form the style extended into his domestic practice in a series of large houses in Edinburgh, Port Glasgow, Penicuik and Walkerburn.

In 1863 Pilkington's parents moved to Kelso, Frederick transferring his office to 2 Hill Street. John Murray Bell (born 1839) commenced practice as a surveyor at the same address in the same year. He acted as surveyor for the Pilkingtons at the Kelso Church in 1864, and their practice was merged as Pilkington & Bell in 1867. The partnership lasted until Bell's death on 31 May 1877.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architectural practice:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 12, Hill Street, Edinburgh, ScotlandBusiness18671877 

Employment and Training

Employees or Pupils

The following individuals were employed or trained by this architectural practice (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 5(Sir) Andrew Thomas Taylor18671869Apprentice 
Item 2 of 5John Murray Bell18671877Partner1868
Item 3 of 5Frederick Thomas Pilkington18671877Partner 
Item 4 of 5Henry Francis Kerr1873c. 1877Apprentice 
Item 5 of 5David Alexander Crombiec. 18731877Apprentice 

Buildings and Designs

This architectural practice was involved with the following buildings or structures from the date specified (click on an item to view details):
 Date startedBuilding nameTown, district or villageIslandCity or countyCountryNotes
Item 1 of 281867Houses, Peddie Street  DundeeScotland 
Item 2 of 281867KirnaWalkerburn PeeblesshireScotland 
Item 3 of 281867WoodhallPort Glasgow RenfrewshireScotland 
Item 4 of 28c. 1867(?)Tenements, Grove Street  EdinburghScotland 
Item 5 of 281868Coltbridge TerraceMurrayfield EdinburghScotland 
Item 6 of 281868Eastern Club  DundeeScotlandMay have done earlier scheme in 1861
Item 7 of 281868McCheyne Memorial Church  DundeeScotland 
Item 8 of 281868St Mark's Greenfield Church  DundeeScotlandWon competition and secured job
Item 9 of 281868Stoneyhill, including lodge and stablesWalkerburn PeeblesshireScotland 
Item 10 of 28c. 1868Tweedvale House and lodgeWalkerburn PeeblesshireScotlandInternal alterations and lodge
Item 11 of 281869Craigend Park with stables and lodgeLiberton EdinburghScotland 
Item 12 of 281869UP ChurchDudhope DundeeScotland 
Item 13 of 28c. 1870ViewforthInverkeithing FifeScotland 
Item 14 of 281871Castle Garden villaCrail FifeScotland 
Item 15 of 281871Viewforth Free Church  EdinburghScotland 
Item 16 of 28c. 1871Lamlash and Kilbride Parish ChurchLamlashArranButeScotlandDesigns - not executed
Item 17 of 281872Chapelshade Free Manse  DundeeScotland 
Item 18 of 281872Tenement and officesHilltown DundeeScotland 
Item 19 of 281872Tyne Lodge and Hill Bank  EdinburghScotland 
Item 20 of 281873Lady Flora's SchoolNewmilns AyrshireScotland 
Item 21 of 281874Dean Park House  EdinburghScotland 
Item 22 of 281874Johnstone SchoolJohnstone RenfrewshireScotland 
Item 23 of 281874Millknowe SchoolCampbeltown ArgyllScotlandOriginal part of school
Item 24 of 281874Mount Park Free ChurchGreenock Renfrewshire  
Item 25 of 281874Terraced houses, Morningside ParkMorningside EdinburghScotlandNos 8-14
Item 26 of 281875New Edinburgh Theatre  EdinburghScotlandInterior work for Gowans
Item 27 of 281876Moffat HydropathicMoffat DumfriesshireScotland 
Item 28 of 28c. 187761-79 Morningside Park  EdinburghScotland 


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this architectural practice:
Item 1 of 2RCAHMS1992Dundee on Record RCAHMSView of Eastern Club North Facade (1967) p45
Item 2 of 2Walker, Frank Arneil1986South Clyde Estuary: An Illustrated Architectural Guide to Inverclyde and Renfrew  p124