Basic Biographical Details
|Name: ||Cousin & Gale |
|Designation: ||Architectural practice |
|Started: ||1839 |
|Ended: ||1845 |
|Bio Notes: ||David Cousin was born in North Leith in 1809 (christened 28 May), the son of John Cousin, joiner and his wife Isabella Paterson. He was articled to his father as a joiner but studied mathematics with Edward Sang and early secured a place in William Henry Playfair's office, exhibiting a design for a parish church in the RSA of 1830. He left in 1831 to commence his own practice from his father's house at 24 Fettes Row. No executed work is known from the first few years but he competed for the Scott Monument and became acquainted with John Claudius Loudon for whose 'Cottage, Farm and Villa Architecture' he made two designs, that for a Scots baronial mansion being advanced for its date. |
Around 1837 Cousin moved to 12 Clarence Street on his marriage to his first wife Isabella Galloway. Shortly thereafter, in 1839, he formed a short-lived partnership with the Glasgow civil engineer William Gale under the style of Cousin & Gale, Cousin being in charge of the Edinburgh office and Gale the Glasgow one. Gale had been in partnership with Robert Scott and John Stephen in the 1830s, but that partnership had come to an end some time after the death of Robert Scott in April 1839. The Cousin & Gale practice came to wider notice almost immediately by winning two competitions, one for the classical West Church in Greenock and another for the neo-Norman Parish Church at Cambuslang.
In 1841 Cousin was appointed assistant to the elderly city Superintendent of Works, Thomas Brown, at 12 Royal Exchange, with freedom to continue his private practice, which was based at 43 Princes Street from c.1843. Over-commitment in relation to the Greenock Church brought about what was described as 'brain-fever' which left his health permanently impaired; although he was one of the most outstanding architects of his generation, his recurrent ill-health and preoccupation with civic duties prevented his abilities from being as fully realised as they might have been.
From 1843 the main business of the Cousin & Gale practice was Free Church work for which Cousin had made standard designs. The partnership was dissolved in 1845; Cousin then became architect to the British Linen Bank following the death of George Angus in that year, whilst the Gales continued to provide architectural as well as engineering services. Their Ayr church was very competent neo-Norman, similar to that of David Cousin's Edinburgh churches, and may have been designed by Cousin before the dissolution of the partnership: whether it owed anything to their referral of the drawings to Thomas Hamilton for an opinion is unclear.
Private and Business Addresses
|The following private or business addresses are associated with this architectural practice:|
| ||Address||Type||Date from||Date to||Notes|
|12, Royal Exchange, Edinburgh, Scotland||Business||c. 1842||c. 1843||Office run by Cousin|
|153, Queen Street, Glasgow, Scotland||Business||c. 1842||c. 1843||Office run by Gale|
Employment and Training
Employees or Pupils
|The following individuals were employed or trained by this architectural practice (click on an item to view details):|
| ||Name||Date from||Date to||Position||Notes|
|William Gale||c. 1838||1845||Partner|| |
|David Cousin||c. 1838||1845||Partner|| |
Buildings and Designs
|The following books contain references to this architectural practice:|
|Post Office Directories|| || || || || |