Basic Biographical Details

Name: Alexander Cullen
Designation: Architect
Born: 18 June 1856
Died: 21 January 1911
Bio Notes: Alexander Cullen was born on 18 June 1856 at Craigneuk, Wishaw, the son of William Cullen and his wife Mary Hill. Initially he was apprenticed to a builder, but he then attended Glasgow University and set up practice in Clyde Street, Motherwell in the early 1880s.

In 1889 Colonel H H Robertson Aikman commissioned him to reconstruct The Ross at Hamilton as a major house in the David Bryce manner: it was exhibited at the RSA and the RGI and was widely published, establishing his reputation. An office in Quarry Street, Hamilton was established to build it and undertake other work in the Hamilton area, Cullen having become architect to the standing joint committee of the County of Lanarkshire.

Cullen was admitted FRIBA in November 1898 on the recommendation of the Glasgow Institute of Architects: his proposers are not known as the relevant sheet is missing. By that date he had already been admitted FRSE, a very unusual distinction for a provincial architect.

In 1898-99 Cullen designed Brandon Chambers, Hamilton as his main office and Motherwell became a branch office. His practice prospered and by 24 June 1902 the business was so extensive with many commissions both public and private in the counties of Lanarkshire and Renfrewshire that he took into partnership James Lochhead and William Brown. Lochhead had been born in 1870 and articled to Allan Stevenson of Ayr, subsequently working for Henry Higgins of Glasgow and for the Office of Works before joining Cullen as a chief draughtsman and prospective partner. After Lochhead's arrival the work of the practice became extremely accomplished Edwardian Baroque and classical. Brown was the practice's long-time senior assistant. Born in 1873, he had served his articles with Cullen, remaining as an assistant before being taken into partnership. He was put in charge of the Motherwell office at 4 Clyde Street. Initially the practice name remained as Alex Cullen; it won the major competition for Hamilton Municipal Buildings in 1903, and a Glasgow office was established at Atlantic Chambers in Hope Street to supervise the Western District Hospital, a by-product of the competition for the Eastern District Hospital in which Cullen and Lochhead had been placed first but did not receive the commission. From 1908 onwards the practice was known as Alex Cullen, Lochhead & Brown.

Cullen had wide interests and was well read in architectural history as well as contemporary architecture and this is reflected in the varied nature of the practice's large library. In 1907 he gifted a proportion of this library to Hamilton District Libraries. Although these books have now been dispersed, the catalogue shows that in addition to the publications of Pugin, Scott, Fergusson, the Audsleys, Starforth and G A T Middleton, Cullen subscribed to 'The American Architect' and bought books on Japanese and Mexican architecture; and among his continental books was a copy of Guimard's 'Le Castel Beranger'. Cullen himself was the author of many articles on a variety of subjects and his book 'Adventures in Socialism', a history of New Lanark, was published in 1910. He was a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland and at the time of his death he was President of the Architectural Section of the Glasgow Philosophical Society.

Cullen died at the relatively early age of 54 on 21 January 1911 at 3 Blythswood Square, and was buried at Bent Cemetery, Hamilton. By that date a Glasgow office had been established in Atlantic Chambers in Hope Street and he had a house at 3 Blythswood Square. His moveable estate amounted to 9,238 11s 2d, a very large sum for an architect at that date. He was survived by his widow, Barbara Rodger, and by three sons and two daughters. His youngest son, Alexander (born 1892), was in the first year of his apprenticeship with the firm at the time of his father's death. Anither son, James, appears to have also been an architect. Lochhead and Brown continued the practice, which was known thereafter simply as Cullen, Lochhead & Brown.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architect:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 96, Saffronhall Lane, Hamilton, Lanarkshire, ScotlandPrivate   
Item 2 of 9Millburn, Dalserf, Lanarkshire, ScotlandPrivate   
Item 3 of 9Craigneuk, Wishaw, Lanarkshire, ScotlandPrivate1856 Place of birth
Item 4 of 9Quarry Street, Hamilton, Lanarkshire, ScotlandBusinessc. 1889c. 1899 
Item 5 of 98, Clyde Street, Motherwell, Lanarkshire, ScotlandBusiness18961898 
Item 6 of 9Brandon Chambers, Brandon Street, Hamilton, Lanarkshire, ScotlandBusiness1898 or 18991911 
Item 7 of 9Atlantic Chambers, Glasgow, ScotlandBusinessc. 19031911 
Item 8 of 93, Blythswood Square, Glasgow, ScotlandPrivate1911 *  
Item 9 of 94, Clyde Street, Motherwell, Lanarkshire, ScotlandBusiness1911 *  

* earliest date known from documented sources.


Employment and Training

Employers

The following individuals or organisations employed or trained this architect (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 2James Kingc. 1871(?)c. 1876(?)Apprentice 
Item 2 of 2Alex Cullen, Lochhead & Brown1908January 1911Partner 

Employees or Pupils

The following individuals were employed or trained by this architect (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 23William Brown1888c. 1893Apprentice 
Item 2 of 23George Alexander PyottAfter 1889Before 1897Assistant 
Item 3 of 23John Daniel Swanstonc. 1891c. 1892Assistant 
Item 4 of 23William Brownc. 189324 June 1902Assistant 
Item 5 of 23George Gunn1895Before 1902Assistant(?)Mentioned by Gunn in his Proposer's Separate Statement for William Brown's LRIBA nomination papers
Item 6 of 23William Stephen GibsonSeptember 1895November 1902ApprenticeProbably Assistant for the last two to three years
Item 7 of 23Andrew Victor Wilson18971902Apprentice 
Item 8 of 23William Mair Bishop18991904Apprentice 
Item 9 of 23James Lochhead190024 June 1902Chief Draughtsman 
Item 10 of 23Thomas Canfield Pomphrey19001906Apprentice 
Item 11 of 23Malcolm Sinclair McCallum4 September 19001905Apprentice 
Item 12 of 23John Stirling Jarvie1901 or 19021902 or 1903AssistantIn Motherwell office
Item 13 of 23Alexander Wright1902Late 1903Assistant 
Item 14 of 23James Lochhead24 June 19021908Partner 
Item 15 of 23William Brown24 June 19021908Partner 
Item 16 of 23George Dykes1903 Assistant 
Item 17 of 23Thomas Spiers Fraser1903After 1905Assistant 
Item 18 of 23William Mair Bishop19041906 or 1907Junior Assistant 
Item 19 of 23Alexander Young19041907Assistant 
Item 20 of 23James McLellan Brown19041908Apprentice 
Item 21 of 23Malcolm Sinclair McCallum19051908Assistant 
Item 22 of 23Hugh Dykes Simpson19051908Assistant 
Item 23 of 23William Mair Bishop1906 or 19071908Senior Assistant 

RIBA

RIBA Proposals

This architect proposed the following individuals for RIBA membership (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate proposedNotes
Item 1 of 4James Davidson3 December 1906for Fellowship
Item 2 of 4George Dykes29 February 1904for Associateship
Item 3 of 4Thomas Spiers Fraser5 March 1906for Associateship
Item 4 of 4William Williamson5 June 1905for Fellowship

Buildings and Designs

This architect 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 135 Bellshill Fire StationBellshill LanarkshireScotlandAttribution; date unknown
Item 2 of 135 Craigneuk Police StationCraigneuk LanarkshireScotlandAttribution; date unknown
Item 3 of 135 Glenlee SchoolHamilton LanarkshireScotlandDate unknown
Item 4 of 135 Greenfield SchoolHamilton LanarkshireScotlandAttribution; date unknown
Item 5 of 135 High SchoolMotherwell LanarkshireScotlandDate unknown
Item 6 of 135 Lanark Fire StationLanark LanarkshireScotlandAttribution; date unknown
Item 7 of 135 Large House at CarmunnockCarmunnock GlasgowScotlandDate unknown
Item 8 of 135 Merry Street SchoolMotherwell LanarkshireScotlandAttribution; date unknown
Item 9 of 135 MillburnDalserf LanarkshireScotlandRestoration - attribution; date unknown
Item 10 of 135 Shettleston Fire StationShettleston GlasgowScotlandAttribution; date unknown
Item 11 of 135 Shettleston Police StationShettleston GlasgowScotlandAttribution; date unknown
Item 12 of 1351888Bent Road SchoolHamilton LanarkshireScotlandPlans
Item 13 of 1351888The OrchardMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 14 of 1351889Academy SchoolHamilton LanarkshireScotlandProposed alterations and additions - in partnership from 1908
Item 15 of 1351889The RossHamilton LanarkshireScotlandReconstruction as Baronial mansion
Item 16 of 1351892Tenements, Hamilton Road and Muir StreetMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 17 of 1351894Burnbank Police StationHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 18 of 1351894Dalziel Co-operative Society OfficesMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 19 of 1351894Midstone HallHamilton LanarkshireScotlandDesign for entrance lodge and gateway exhibited
Item 20 of 1351895Motherwell Baptist Church and church hallMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 21 of 1351897Lanarkshire County HospitalMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 22 of 1351897Motherwell Police StationMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 23 of 1351897Skipton Infectious Diseases HospitalSkipton YorkshireEnglandSecond premiated competition design (10 premium)
Item 24 of 1351897Young Men's Christian Association InstituteHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 25 of 1351898Beckford Street SchoolHamilton LanarkshireScotlandPlans for alterations; plans for new cookery classroom and additions to infant department
Item 26 of 1351898Brandon ChambersHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 27 of 1351898Stonehouse Parish ChurchStonehouse LanarkshireScotland 
Item 28 of 1351898Young Men's Christian InstituteMotherwell LanarkshireScotlandDesign exhibited
Item 29 of 1351899Auchinraith SchoolBlantyre LanarkshireScotlandDesign exhibited
Item 30 of 1351899Forfar Fever HospitalWhitehills, Forfar AngusScotlandSecond premiated competition design
Item 31 of 1351899House at LarkhallLarkhall LanarkshireScotland 
Item 32 of 1351900Bo'ness Public SchoolBo'ness / Borrowstouness West LothianScotlandCompetition designs for extension to north - described as 'new academy' in contemporary sources
Item 33 of 1351900Carnbooth HouseBusby LanarkshireScotlandDesign exhibited. Design also exhibited 1907
Item 34 of 1351900County Hall and Sheriff Court Houses and County Police OfficeHamilton LanarkshireScotlandCounty Police Office to Beckford Street
Item 35 of 1351900Eastern District Hospital  GlasgowScotlandCompetition design - not successful, but secured Cullen the commission for the Western District Hospital (see Notes)
Item 36 of 1351900Ferniegair Mission ChurchFerniegair LanarkshireScotland 
Item 37 of 1351900Holy Trinity UF ChurchLarkhall LanarkshireScotland 
Item 38 of 1351900Police BuildingsKirkcaldy FifeScotlandCompetition design - placed second
Item 39 of 1351900Terrace of houses, Lanark RoadRosebank LanarkshireScotland 
Item 40 of 1351900The Popinjay Hotel, RosebankDalserf LanarkshireScotlandProbably new build
Item 41 of 1351901Lightburn Infectious Deseases Hospital  GlasgowScotlandAlterations, including waiting rooms
Item 42 of 1351901New Century TheatreMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 43 of 1351901Working Men's HomeWishaw LanarkshireScotland 
Item 44 of 1351902Auchinlea Workmen's Home  LanarkshireScotland 
Item 45 of 1351902Bo'ness Public SchoolBo'ness / Borrowstouness West LothianScotlandExtension to north-east - secured commission by competition
Item 46 of 1351902Lanarkshire Middle Ward and District OfficesHamilton LanarkshireScotlandDesign exhibited - also exhibited 1903
Item 47 of 1351902Larkhall Police StationLarkhall LanarkshireScotland 
Item 48 of 1351902Mossend Lodging HouseMossend LanarkshireScotland 
Item 49 of 1351902The Rowan Tree InnUddingston LanarkshireScotlandRemodelling
Item 50 of 1351902Thornlie UF ManseWishaw LanarkshireScotland 
Item 51 of 135After 1902(?)GordonbankLarkhall LanarkshireScotlandMay not have been involved - depends on date
Item 52 of 1351903BlairholmeBonkle, Newmains LanarkshireScotland 
Item 53 of 1351903Craigneuk Infant SchoolCraigneuk LanarkshireScotland 
Item 54 of 1351903Douglas ChambersHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 55 of 1351903Douglas Public SchoolDouglas LanarkshireScotlandReconstruction
Item 56 of 1351903Gaiety TheatreAyr AyrshireScotlandRebuilding after fire
Item 57 of 1351903Grand Theatre and Opera HouseFalkirk StirlingshireScotland 
Item 58 of 1351903Hamilton Municipal Buildings and Public LibraryHamilton LanarkshireScotlandWon competition and secured job; municipal offices only built before First World War (and continued after Cullen's death in 1911)
Item 59 of 1351903Jerviston HouseMotherwell LanarkshireScotlandRestoration
Item 60 of 1351903King's TheatreKilmarnock AyrshireScotlandDesign exhibited 1905
Item 61 of 1351903KirknoweCambusnethan LanarkshireScotland 
Item 62 of 1351903Omoa Combination PoorhouseCleland LanarkshireScotland 
Item 63 of 1351903St Andrews ChurchMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 64 of 1351903St Machan's Church hallLarkhall LanarkshireScotland 
Item 65 of 1351903Vicar ChambersFalkirk StirlingshireScotland 
Item 66 of 1351903Western District HospitalOakbank GlasgowScotland 
Item 67 of 13519044 and 6 Keith StreetHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 68 of 1351904Bothwell Police StationBothwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 69 of 1351904Coatbridge Carnegie LibraryCoatbridge LanarkshireScotland 
Item 70 of 1351904Dalziel PoorhouseMotherwell LanarkshireScotlandWon competition to secure job
Item 71 of 1351904Hamilton Parish Council ChambersHamilton LanarkshireScotlandWon competition to secure job
Item 72 of 1351904Kirklands Mental HospitalBothwell LanarkshireScotlandNurses' home and cottages?
Item 73 of 1351904Templehall Buildings and adjacent tenements in Quarry StreetHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 74 of 1351904Tenements, 3-10 Kemp StreetHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 75 of 1351904Tram Car Sheds and Tramway Power StationLow Motherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 76 of 1351904Villa at Bent RoadHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 77 of 135c. 1904Hartwood AsylumShotts LanarkshireScotlandSanatorium block added
Item 78 of 135c. 1904Tenements, 14-18 Kemp StreetHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 79 of 1351905Alexandra TheatreGreenock RenfrewshireScotlandActing as consultant architects
Item 80 of 1351905Clyde ChambersWishaw LanarkshireScotland 
Item 81 of 1351905County HospitalBellshill LanarkshireScotland 
Item 82 of 1351905Dundyvan ChurchCoatbridge LanarkshireScotland 
Item 83 of 1351905Dundyvan ManseCoatbridge LanarkshireScotland 
Item 84 of 1351905GlenleeCardross DunbartonshireScotland 
Item 85 of 1351905Greenock and District Combination Hospital, GatesideGreenock RenfrewshireScotland 
Item 86 of 1351905Newmains Police StationNewmains LanarkshireScotland 
Item 87 of 1351905Overtown Police StationOvertown LanarkshireScotland 
Item 88 of 1351905Parkhead Model Lodging HouseParkhead GlasgowScotland 
Item 89 of 1351905Strathhaven SchoolStrathhaven LanarkshireScotland 
Item 90 of 1351905Tenements, Brandon StreetMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 91 of 1351905The MooringsMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 92 of 1351905Udston House, BurnbankHamilton LanarkshireScotlandAlterations
Item 93 of 1351905Wishaw Police StationWishaw LanarkshireScotland 
Item 94 of 135c. 1905Offices for the National BankHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 95 of 1351906Braidwood HospitalCarluke LanarkshireScotlandNew fever pavilion and administration block, new wards, and gatelodge
Item 96 of 1351906Dalziel Co-operative Society OfficesMotherwell LanarkshireScotlandReconstruction after a fire
Item 97 of 1351906Hilltop, BlairhillCoatbridge LanarkshireScotland 
Item 98 of 1351906JarvistonMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 99 of 1351906Russell Memorial HallBothwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 100 of 1351906Wishaw CourthouseWishaw LanarkshireScotland 
Item 101 of 1351907Board SchoolCarluke LanarkshireScotland 
Item 102 of 1351907Heathery ParkWishaw LanarkshireScotland 
Item 103 of 1351907Institute of Engineers and Shipbuilders  GlasgowScotlandUnsuccessful competition design
Item 104 of 1351907Lanarkshire Miners' Union OfficesHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 105 of 1351907Law Infant SchoolLaw LanarkshireScotland 
Item 106 of 1351907UF Church manses in the Highland area   Scotland 
Item 107 of 1351908Blantyre Police StationBlantyre LanarkshireScotland 
Item 108 of 1351908Langloan UF ChurchCoatbridge LanarkshireScotland 
Item 109 of 1351908Masonic TempleHamilton LanarkshireScotlandSecured commission in competition
Item 110 of 1351908Primitive Methodist ChurchHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 111 of 1351908Quarter Police StationQuarter LanarkshireScotland 
Item 112 of 1351908Salvation Army CitadelHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 113 of 1351908Tarbert UF ChurchTarbert ArgyllScotland 
Item 114 of 1351909Blackpool Central Library and Art GalleryBlackpool LancashireEnglandWon in open competition
Item 115 of 1351909Burgh HospitalMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 116 of 1351909ChapeltounDunlop AyrshireScotland 
Item 117 of 1351909Duthill UF ChurchCarrbridge Inverness-shireScotland 
Item 118 of 1351909East Kilbride Public SchoolEast Kilbride LanarkshireScotlandAdditions
Item 119 of 1351909Gourock Higher Grade SchoolGourock RenfrewshireScotland 
Item 120 of 1351909Hamilton Academy (and house at school)Hamilton LanarkshireScotlandWon competition and secured the job.
Item 121 of 1351909House at BothwellBothwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 122 of 1351909Low Waters Infant SchoolHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 123 of 1351909Tenements for Caledonian Railway Company  GlasgowScotlandBar to north
Item 124 of 1351910Cambuslang Police StationCambuslang LanarkshireScotland 
Item 125 of 1351910Club House, Hamilton Golf ClubHamilton LanarkshireScotland 
Item 126 of 1351910Co-operative Society premisesWishaw LanarkshireScotlandExtensions
Item 127 of 1351910Donald InstituteBothwell LanarkshireScotlandSecured commission by competition
Item 128 of 1351910House at KnowetopMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 129 of 1351910Saffronhall UF ChurchHamilton LanarkshireScotlandExtension
Item 130 of 1351910South Dalziel Parish Church HallsMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 131 of 1351911Bluevale SchoolHaghill GlasgowScotland 
Item 132 of 1351911UF ChurchMotherwell LanarkshireScotland 
Item 133 of 135Before 1911(?)Co-operative Society premisesHamilton LanarkshireScotlandExtensions - possibly involved, but may have been carried out by the practice after his death
Item 134 of 135Before 1911(?)Workmen's housingCleland LanarkshireScotlandPossibly involved, but may have been carried out by the practice after his death
Item 135 of 135Before 1911(?)Workmen's housing, CraigneukCraigneuk LanarkshireScotlandPossibly involved, but may have been carried out by the practice after his death

References

Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this architect:
 Author(s)DateTitlePartPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 3Johnston, W T2003Artists of Scotland Officina Publications CDROM 
Item 2 of 3Stothers, Thomas1912Stothers's Glasgow, Lanarkshire and Renfrewshire Xmas and New Year Annual 1911-19121911-1912Hamiltonp374
Item 3 of 3Walker, Frank Arneil1986South Clyde Estuary: An Illustrated Architectural Guide to Inverclyde and Renfrew  p140

Periodical References

The following periodicals contain references to this architect:
 Periodical NameDateEditionPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 3Glasgow Herald23 January 1911  Obituary
Item 2 of 3Hamilton Advertiser28 January 1911   
Item 3 of 3Lanarkshire [Newspaper] Check25 January 1911   

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this architect:
 SourceArchive NameSource Catalogue No.Notes
Item 1 of 1RIBA Archive, Victoria & Albert MuseumRIBA Nomination Papers F v13 p13 (microfiche 117/E5)