Basic Biographical Details

Name: Simpson, McMichael & Davidson
Designation: Architectural practice
Started: 1924
Ended: c. 1945
Bio Notes: Ebeneezer Simpson was born in 1854 and practised from 16 King Street, Stirling from c.1885. He was a volunteer in the First World War and reached the rank of Colonel.

At some point before 1920 Simpson took George MacCallum Davidson into partnership. Davidson had been born in Bridge of Allan and had been articled to Simpson from 1887 to 1902, attending Glasgow and West of Scotland Technical College. He had remained as assistant with Simpson until 1905 when he had joined R M Christie's practice in Dunblane. Christie had taken him into partnership on 1 January 1909. Davidson had been admitted LRIBA in the mass intake of 20 July 1911, proposed by William Fleming Wilkie and the Dundee Institute of Architects. At that time he was still working with Christie and was living at Louise Villa, Bridge of Allan.

In 1920 the practice became Simpson, McMichael & Davidson when Alastair Marshall McMichael was assumed into partnership. McMichael had been born on 13 September 1888 in Perthshire. There is conflicting information on his early years in his ARIBA and FRIBA nomination papers but it seems that he had begun his higher education studying Fine Arts and modern languages at Edinburgh University, being awarded the degree of MA c.1909. He appears to have been briefly articled to Hugh Campbell from September of the latter year before embarking on three years of full-time studies at Glasgow School of Architecture under Eugène Bourdon, during which period he spent summers working as improver in the office of John Archibald Campbell's firm, Campbell & Hislop. Whilst at the School he also became acquainted with William James Smith (later Professor) and the younger Alexander Cullen (later Colonel). After completing his studies in Glasgow it seems that he moved back to Edinburgh to become a draughtsman in the office of Hippolyte Jean Blanc, and while there developed a 'flair for church work'. He made a study tour in England in July 1914, making measured drawings in Ely and also visiting Canterbury, Lincoln, York and Durham. During the First World War he served with the Royal Engineers as a Surveyor in the 19th Army Heavy Brigade. After his demobilisation he passed the qualifying exam in London in July 1919 and entered the Simpson's office as assistant. He was admitted ARIBA on 1 March 1920, his proposers being Walter Symington Athol Gordon, James Glen Sivewright Gibson and Herbert Hardy Wigglesworth.

Simpson was a somewhat idiosyncratic: although his Museum Hall at Bridge of Allan is Italian Romanesque his later work is mainly free Jacobean. He was married to Mary Jean Hodges. He retired in 1924 and died on 26 December 1934, leaving moveable estate of £10,352 11s 6d. His home address was then 14 Abercromby Place, Stirling. The practice was continued under its existing title by the two surviving partners.

McMichael was admitted FRIBA in late 1932, his proposers being James Glen Sivewright Gibson, Walter Symington Athol Gordon and Oliver Frederick Savege. In 1939-40 both Davidson and McMichael were Fellows of Stirling Society of Architects, and Davidson was a member of its Council. Their partnership was dissolved at the end of the Second World War, both partners continuing to practise separately thereafter.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architectural practice:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 116, King Street, Stirling, Stirlingshire, ScotlandBusiness1924After 1939 

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 7Ebeneezer Simpson19201924Partner 
Item 2 of 7Alastair Marshall McMichael1920c. 1945Partner 
Item 3 of 7George MacCallum DavidsonBefore 1920c. 1945Partner 
Item 4 of 7John Muir McRobbieLate 1920s * Apprentice(?) 
Item 5 of 7John Muir McRobbieAfter 1936 Assistant 
Item 6 of 7John Drummond McFarlane1939(?) * (?)Uncertain whether he worked for this firm but seems likely as he shared their address.
Item 7 of 7William Lang McKendrick1939 or 1940 * (?) 

* earliest date known from documented sources.


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 32 Buildings for John Dickinson & So LtdCroxley Greem, Watford HertfordshireEnglandNew building and additions
Item 2 of 32 Carpet Factory for Messrs A F Stoddard (or Stoddart)Stirling StirlingshireScotlandAdditions?
Item 3 of 32 Clyde Paper MillsEastfield, Rutherglen LanarkshireScotlandLarge additions
Item 4 of 32 Coating factoryTadcaster YorkshireEngland 
Item 5 of 32After 1920Allan Water HydropathicBridge of Allan StirlingshireScotlandAdditions?
Item 6 of 32After 1920Bowaters Paper mills, Ellesmere PortThe Wirral LiverpoolEngland 
Item 7 of 32After 1920Bridge HouseWestfield  Scotland 
Item 8 of 32After 1920Crianlarich HotelCrianlarich PerthshireScotland 
Item 9 of 32After 1920Dreadnought HotelCallander PerthshireScotlandAlterations
Item 10 of 32After 1920Dunblane CathedralDunblane PerthshireScotlandAlterations
Item 11 of 32After 1920Factory or housing at NorthfleetNorthfleet KentEngland 
Item 12 of 32After 1920GlencairnaigCallander PerthshireScotland 
Item 13 of 32After 1920Glenpatrick FactoryElderslie RenfrewshireScotland 
Item 14 of 32After 1920Housing for Callander Burgh CouncilCallander PerthshireScotland 
Item 15 of 32After 1920Housing for Doune Burgh CouncilDoune PerthshireScotland 
Item 16 of 32After 1920Housing for Dunblane Burgh CouncilDunblane PerthshireScotland 
Item 17 of 32After 1920Kingshouse HotelBalquhidder PerthshireScotland 
Item 18 of 32After 1920Longcroft HouseLinlithgow West LothianScotland 
Item 19 of 32After 1920Macfarlane Museum and Art GalleryBridge of Allan StirlingshireScotlandAlterations?
Item 20 of 32After 1920Premises for J Pullar & SonsDunblane PerthshireScotland 
Item 21 of 32After 1920Premises for J Pullar & SonsBridge of Allan StirlingshireScotland 
Item 22 of 32After 1920Royal HotelTyndrum StirlingshireScotland 
Item 23 of 32After 1920The GartCallander PerthshireScotland 
Item 24 of 32After 1920Trossachs InnCallander PerthshireScotlandAlterations?
Item 25 of 32After 1920Westfield Paper MillsBathgate West LothianScotland 
Item 26 of 321926Victoria HallDunblane PerthshireScotland 
Item 27 of 321929Bowater's Mersey Paper Mill, NetherpoolEllesmere Port CheshireEnglandEstimated cost £1,000,000
Item 28 of 32After 1930Housing for Perthshire County Council  PerthshireScotland 
Item 29 of 321932Stirling District and County Savings BankAlva StirlingshireScotland 
Item 30 of 321933Masonic TempleBridge of Allan StirlingshireScotland 
Item 31 of 321933New Co-operative storeStirling StirlingshireScotland 
Item 32 of 321937St Ninian's Parish ChurchStirling StirlingshireScotlandAlterations

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.