Basic Biographical Details

Name: Watson & Mitchell
Designation: Architectural practice
Started: 1907 or 1909
Ended: Before 1913
Bio Notes: Thomas Lennox Watson was born in Glasgow on 21 August 1850, the son of Charles Watson and his wife Elizabeth (or Eliza, whose maiden name was also Watson) of 11 Loudon Terrace, Glasgow. His father was a member of the great shipping-owning firm of G & J Burns and the naval architect George Lennox Watson was his cousin. His elder sister Isabella was to become the principal of a primary school. Thomas was educated at Glasgow High School, articled to Boucher & Cousland in 1866, and studied at Glasgow School of Art under Charles Heath Wilson. At the end of his apprenticeship in 1871 he found a place as an assistant in the London office of Alfred Waterhouse, and returned to Glasgow to commence practice in 1874, initially at 137 West Regent Street, moving to number 108 of the same street soon thereafter. He came into prominence very early, securing the commissions for the free classical Adelaide Place Baptist Church, Glasgow (1875-6) and for the Gothic Kilmacolm Hydropathic (1878) and winning the competitions for the neo-Romanesque Victoria Baths Club, Glasgow and North UP Church in Perth (1876-8 and 1878) and the gigantic neo-Roman Wellington UP Church in Glasgow (1882). He was admitted FRIBA on 9 June 1884, his proposers being John Honeyman, Alfred Waterhouse and Arthur Cates.

Watson's experience with Waterhouse showed most obviously in his Romanesque competition design for Glasgow Municipal Buildings, one of the very few non-classical designs to be submitted. In his larger domestic commissions Watson drew more from Norman Shaw's Old English than from Waterhouse, a development that may in some degree have been associated with William James Anderson, who was his chief assistant from c.1883 until 1888. Anderson certainly drew out the high quality Renaissance detail of his Citizen Building in St Vincent Place.

In or about 1907 Watson took Henry Mitchell into partnership. Born at Renton/Cardross in 1864, Mitchell was the son of Francis Mitchell, a gem and seal engraver, and his wife Mary Liddel. He had been articled to Campbell Douglas & Sellars from 1884 until 1889 and had worked for Honeyman & Keppie prior to forming a partnership with William tait Conner in 1894. This had not prospered and neither had a second partnership with Charles Edward Whitelaw formed in 1902 (??). Together Watson and Mitchell completed the very large block at 396-450 Sauchiehall Street, but the Finance Act of 1909 seems to have resulted in the practice running out of work. By 1913 the Glasgow office had been closed and Mitchell was practising alone from his house at 20 Sutherland Street, Helensburgh.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architectural practice:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 1Glasgow, ScotlandBusiness   

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 2Thomas Lennox Watson1907 or 1909Before 1917Partner 
Item 2 of 2Henry Mitchell1907 or 1909Before 1917Partner 

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 21907396-450 Sauchiehall Street  GlasgowScotland 
Item 2 of 2c. 1909Meteor Yacht Interior     

References

Currently, there are no references for this architectural practice. The information has been derived from: the British Architectural Library / RIBA Directory of British Architects 1834-1914; Post Office Directories; and/or any sources listed under this individual's works.