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Basic Biographical Details

Name: George Walton
Designation: Architect
Born: 3 June 1867
Died: 10 December 1933
Bio Notes: George Henry Walton was born in Glasgow on 3 June 1867, the youngest of the twelve children of Jackson Walton, a Manchester commission agent, by his second wife, the Aberdeen-born Quaker Eliza Ann Nicholson: the painter Edward Arthur Walton, born near Barrhead on 15 April 1860 was his elder brother and the flower painter Constance Walton his sister. The Waltons had settled in Glasgow in 1862, Jackson becoming first a manufacturer of steam boiler coverings and later a manufacturing chemist, neither successfully. He was, however, a good amateur painter and photographer: one of his elder daughters, the decorative artist, Helen, born 1850, also had marked ability, studying at Glasgow School of Design from 1865 and becoming artistic mentor to the younger members of the family. Jackson died in 1873 leaving his family in reduced circumstances. George had to leave Partick Academy in 1881 at the age of thirteen to become a clerk with the British Linen Bank, but while in its employ he studied at Glasgow School of Art (as the School of Design had become in 1869) and took classes with P McGregor Wilson at the short-lived Glasgow Atelier Fine Arts.

In 1888 Miss Catherine Cranston commissioned Walton to re-design the interiors of the tea rooms at 114 Argyle Street, Glasgow (originally opened in 1878). Walton gave up banking and opened showrooms entitled George Walton & Co, Ecclesiastical and House Decorators, at 152 Wellington Street. In 1890 he took on Robert Graham who was to become manager of the company in 1903-05, and in the same year (1890) he became acquainted with the Quaker architect Fred Rowntree through an amateur dramatic performance. In 3 June of the following year Walton married Kate Gall, a London girl whose parents were well-off with good connections, and set up house in Burnet's newly-built Charing Cross Mansions. A daughter was born in 1892.

The Walton firm quickly expanded into woodwork, furniture making and stained glass and from 1896 Walton collaborated with Rowntree on Rowntree family projects in Scarborough and on a large house at Dunblane. Later in the same year Walton was commissioned to decorate and furnish Miss Cranston's Buchanan Street tea room which had been designed by George Washington Browne. In 1897 Walton followed his brother Edward to London where he set up house and studio at 16 Westbourne Park Road, Bayswater. The catalyst appears to have been the commission to design the Photographic Salon in the Dudley Gallery which came to him through his friendship with the Glasgow photographer James Craig Annan. It led to a further commission from George Davison for the Eastman Exhibition in the New Gallery in Regent Street in the same year, and in turn to a series of Eastman Kodak showrooms in London, Glasgow, Brussels, Milan, Vienna and Moscow which brought him international fame.

A George Walton & Co showroom was opened in York's Stonegate in 1898 and in Glasgow a four-storey block of workshops was built in Buccleuch Street in 1899-1900. But from 1901 Walton began to undertake complete buildings having learned enough of building construction from his showroom alterations and his work with Fred Rowntree, his first being The Leys for the photographic magnate J B B Wellington of Wellington & Ward and previously of the Eastman company. Walton moved from Wesbourne Park Road to a more fashionable address at 44 Holland Park Road, and on 17 January 1903 he resigned from George Walton & Co as the time he could give to it had become limited. The York showroom closed in the same year and on 30 June 1905 the other partners wound up the company, their designer Robert Paterson setting up his own business entitled 'The Crafts'. Thereafter Walton practised exclusively as an architect and designer in private practice and was admitted LRIBA in the mass intake of 20 July 1911, his proposer being his long-standing friend Charles Edward Mallows. Since 1905 he had operated from a still grander house, 26 Emperor's Gate, Kensington, but with the outbreak of war,work tailed off. Kate died and the financial support of the Gall family died with her. Their daughter Marguerite married a doctor in the RAMC and the Emperor's Gate house was given up. In 1916 Walton moved to Carlisle as assistant architect and designer to the Central Control Board (liquor traffic) working under the supervision of Harry Redfern on a series of hurried public house refurbishments.

On 20 November 1918 Walton married a colleague at the Central Control Board, Dorothy (Daphne) Jeram, the daughter of a Hampshire doctor: a son was born in 1920. Walton resigned from the Central Control Board in 1919 to resume private practice, but this proved difficult to re-establish despite the continuing support of Davison, Wellington and the Scottish portrait-painter W O Hutchinson who had married his niece. His practice was now mainly as a textile designer for Morton Sundour Fabrics of Carlisle, but in August 1930 Sir James Morton had to cease commissioning designs partly because of the severity of the recession and partly because the prevailing fashion for Art Deco resulted in too few of his designs being put into production. Davison died in December of the same year and in March 1931 the Waltons had to give up their London house and studio and move to 70 Seabrook Road, Hythe, where living costs were cheaper.

Walton died depressed and frustrated by lack of work of any kind on 10 December 1933. John Betjeman obtained a civil list pension for his widow. The drawings and photographs relating to his later practice are in the British Archtectural Library Collection.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architect:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 8George Walton & Co/152, Wellington Street, Glasgow, ScotlandBusiness1888  
Item 2 of 8Workshops, Buccleuch Street, Glasgow, ScotlandBusiness18891900 
Item 3 of 8Charing Cross Mansions, Glasgow, ScotlandPrivate1891  
Item 4 of 816, Westbourne Park Road, Bayswater, London, EnglandPrivate/business1897  
Item 5 of 8George Walton & Co, Stonegate, York, Yorkshire, EnglandBusiness18981903 
Item 6 of 844, Holland Park Road, London, EnglandPrivatec. 1902  
Item 7 of 826, Emperor's Gate, South Kensington, London, EnglandPrivate/business1905Before 1916 
Item 8 of 870, Seabrook Road, Hythe, Kent, EnglandPrivateMarch 1931  

Employment and Training

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 1Alexander Ross Lindsay18981900Assistant 

RIBA

RIBA Proposers

The following individuals proposed this architect for RIBA membership (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate proposedNotes
Item 1 of 1Charles Edward Mallows20 July 1911for Licentiateship

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 98 4 Devonshire Gardens  GlasgowScotlandStained-glass window - date not known
Item 2 of 98 The CroftHelensburgh DunbartonshireScotlandChimneypiece in studio
Item 3 of 981888Miss Cranston's Tea Rooms, Argyle Street  GlasgowScotlandInteriors of tea room
Item 4 of 981890Premises for T & R Annan, Sauchiehall Street  GlasgowScotlandInteriors
Item 5 of 981890St Peter's Episcopal Church  GlasgowScotlandInterior decoration
Item 6 of 98189115 Grosvenor Crescent  GlasgowScotlandInteriors
Item 7 of 981891203 Bath Street  GlasgowScotlandInteriors
Item 8 of 9818915 Dundonald Road  GlasgowScotlandInteriors
Item 9 of 9818917 Woodside Place  GlasgowScotlandInteriors
Item 10 of 981891Fancy fair stage set for Glasgow Society of Lady Artists  GlasgowScotlandIn conjunction with Fred Rowntree
Item 11 of 981891Shop for Neilson Shaw & MacGregor, silk merchants  GlasgowScotland 
Item 12 of 981891The GlenPaisley RenfrewshireScotlandInteriors
Item 13 of 981891Thornton LodgeHelensburgh DunbartonshireScotlandInteriors
Item 14 of 9818928 Great Western Terrace  GlasgowScotlandStair window
Item 15 of 98c. 1892Shop and photographic studios  GlasgowScotland 
Item 16 of 981893DrumalisLarne County AntrimNorthern IrelandInteriors
Item 17 of 981893East ParkBarrhead RenfrewshireScotlandInteriors
Item 18 of 981895John Rowntree & Sons CaféScarborough YorkshireEnglandWith Stark & Rowntree
Item 19 of 981895Lady Artists' Club, Blythswood Square  GlasgowScotlandDesigns for Fancy Fair, with Stark & Rowntree
Item 20 of 981896Drawing Room  GlasgowScotland 
Item 21 of 981896Lady Artists' Club, Blythswood Square  GlasgowScotlandGallery, with Stark & Rowntree
Item 22 of 981896Miss Cranston's Tea Rooms, Buchanan Street  GlasgowScotlandInterior furnishings
Item 23 of 98c. 1896GlenbankLenzie Dunbartonshire/LanarkshireScotlandInteriors
Item 24 of 981897Bedford HousePollokshields GlasgowScotlandInteriors
Item 25 of 981897Dudley Gallery, photographic salon (temporary exhibition)  LondonEngland 
Item 26 of 981897Eastman Exhibition, New Gallery  LondonEngland 
Item 27 of 981897LedcamerochBearsden GlasgowScotlandInterior decoration - hall and drawing room
Item 28 of 981897The Anchor Tea Room  GlasgowScotlandRemodelling
Item 29 of 981897The Cabin Tea Room  GlasgowScotlandRemodelling
Item 30 of 981897The Mecca Tea Room  GlasgowScotlandRemodelling
Item 31 of 981897The Orient Tea Room  GlasgowScotlandRemodelling
Item 32 of 981897William Rowntree's department storeScarborough YorkshireEnglandTea room
Item 33 of 981898BeechcroftMolesey SurreyEnglandInterior work and furniture
Item 34 of 981898Elm BankYork YorkshireEnglandRemodelling of interior - with A J Penty
Item 35 of 981898Exhibition stand for Wellington & Ward, Crystal Palace  LondonEngland 
Item 36 of 981898Kodak Shop  LondonEngland 
Item 37 of 981898Miss Cranston's Tea Rooms, Argyle Street  GlasgowScotlandInteriors
Item 38 of 981898Parkinson's Café  DoncasterEnglandInteriors
Item 39 of 981898Premises for Eastman Photographic Materials Co  LondonEnglandInteriors
Item 40 of 981898Royal Glasgow Institute, Warneuke Exhibition interior  GlasgowScotland 
Item 41 of 981899Artists Guild Exhibition, photographic stands     
Item 42 of 981899Kodak showroom  BrusselsBelgium 
Item 43 of 981899The White HouseHelensburgh DunbartonshireScotlandFurnishings
Item 44 of 981899Workshops for George Walton & Co  GlasgowScotlandWith Stark & Rowntree
Item 45 of 98After 1899The HallHarlech GwyneddWales 
Item 46 of 981900AultwharrieDunblane PerthshireScotlandWith Rowntree
Item 47 of 981900Kodak Showroom  LondonEngland 
Item 48 of 98c. 190017-45 Cleveden Road and 1-98 Beaconsfield Road  GlasgowScotlandRefurbishment of no 31
Item 49 of 98c. 190028 Kensington Court  LondonEnglandInteriors
Item 50 of 98190144 Holland StreetKensington LondonEnglandInteriors
Item 51 of 981901Glasgow International Exhibition of 1901, 'Little House' stand for G Walton & CoKelvingrove Park GlasgowScotland 
Item 52 of 981901Kodak Showroom  LondonEngland 
Item 53 of 981901The LeysElstree HertfordshireEngland 
Item 54 of 98c. 1901Kodak Showroom  MoscowRussia 
Item 55 of 98c. 1901Kodak Showroom  DublinEire 
Item 56 of 98c. 1901Kodak Showroom  GlasgowScotland 
Item 57 of 98c. 1901Kodak Showroom  MilanItaly 
Item 58 of 98c. 1901Kodak Showroom  ViennaAustria 
Item 59 of 98190211 Kelvin Drive  GlasgowScotlandInterior work
Item 60 of 981902Alma HouseCheltenham GloucestershireEnglandInteriors
Item 61 of 981902Armadale  GlasgowScotlandInterior work
Item 62 of 981902Crystal Palace, American Exhibition, Kodak Stand  LondonEngland 
Item 63 of 981902Finnart HouseWeybridge SurreyEnglandInteriors
Item 64 of 981902House for Carl Bembé  MainzGermanyInteriors. (With Emanuel Seidl of Munich)
Item 65 of 981902The Log Cabin HouseboatRiver Thames LondonEnglandInteriors
Item 66 of 98c. 1902The Phillipines, Idle HillBrasted Chart KentEnglandInteriors
Item 67 of 981905Exhibtion Room  BerlinGermany 
Item 68 of 981905House (possibly called Jordaens)  BrusselsBelgiumInteriors
Item 69 of 98c. 190526 Emperor's Gate  LondonEnglandInteriors
Item 70 of 981907St David's HotelHarlech GwyneddWales 
Item 71 of 981908The White HouseShiplake OxfordshireEnglandHouse and gardener's house
Item 72 of 981908Wern FawrHarlech GwyneddWales 
Item 73 of 981909St John'sRydeIsle of WightHampshireEngland 
Item 74 of 98c. 1909Halcyon Club  LondonEnglandInteriors
Item 75 of 981910Wern FawrHarlech GwyneddWalesFurther work
Item 76 of 981910Wern FawrHarlech GwyneddWalesMusic room block
Item 77 of 98c. 1910Shop for Waterer & DickensBromley London?England 
Item 78 of 98c. 191150 Victoria RoadKensington LondonEnglandAlterations
Item 79 of 98191432 Holland Park  LondonEnglandInteriors
Item 80 of 981914Shop for Wellington & Ward  LondonEngland 
Item 81 of 981916Gretna TavernCarlisle CumberlandEnglandConversion of former post office to tavern. With Harry Redfern
Item 82 of 981916Lion and Lamb Tavern  CumberlandEnglandWith Harry Redfern
Item 83 of 981916The Globe TavernLongtown CumberlandEnglandWith Harry Redfern
Item 84 of 98c. 1916Studio interior work for Malcolm Arbuthnot  LondonEngland 
Item 85 of 981919St Peter's Episcopal Church  GlasgowScotlandReredos
Item 86 of 981919The Log Hut, Spade Oak ReachBourne End BuckinghamshireEngland 
Item 87 of 981920Bank of England  LondonEnglandGarden layout
Item 88 of 98192112 Little Stanhope Street  LondonEnglandInterior decoration
Item 89 of 981921Terrace of four housesShepherd's Bush LondonEngland 
Item 90 of 981921The LeysElstree HertfordshireEnglandLodge and gates
Item 91 of 981922Church of All SaintsBorehamwood HertfordshireEngland 
Item 92 of 98c. 1922Parish HallBorehamwood HertfordshireEngland 
Item 93 of 981923Chateau des Enfants  Cap d'AntibesFranceInteriors
Item 94 of 981923The LeysElstree HertfordshireEnglandNew wing
Item 95 of 98192534 Ladbrooke Road  LondonEnglandMinor alterations
Item 96 of 981927St Anne's ChurchDerby DerbyshireEnglandReredos
Item 97 of 981929The Old VicarageLetheringham SuffolkEnglandReconstruction
Item 98 of 981931Chapel of St George  Cap d'AntibesFrance 

References

Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this architect:
 Author(s)DateTitlePartPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 6Allan, I1985George Walton at Harlech Journal of the Merioneth Historical and Record Society, v10, p77-84 
Item 2 of 6British Architectural Library, RIBA2001Directory of British Architects 1834-1914   
Item 3 of 6Jones, David1991George Walton's revival of Scottish furniture types Scotland and Europe architecture and design 1850-1940, ed J Frew and D Jones, p59-66 
Item 4 of 6Moon, Karen1980George Walton & Co: work for commercial organisations: The Rowntree firmsno 5The Journal of the Decorative Arts Society 
Item 5 of 6Moon, Karen1993George Walton, Designer and Architect   
Item 6 of 6Pevsner, N Studies in architecture and design  v2, p176-188

Periodical References

The following periodicals contain references to this architect:
 Periodical NameDateEditionPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 3Builder15 December 1933   
Item 2 of 3RIBA Journal3 April 1939 London: Royal Institute of British ArchitectsArticle by N. Pevsner pp537-548
Item 3 of 3The Studio1906  p33

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 L v21 no1652