Basic Biographical Details

Name: Richard Popplewell Pullan
Designation: Architect
Born: 27 March 1825
Died: 30 April 1888
Bio Notes: Richard Popplewell Pullan was born at Knaresborough on 27 March 1825. He was articled to Richard Lane in Manchester, and in Lane's office he subsequently became acquainted with Alfred Waterhouse who was five years younger. In 1853 he worked with Sir Matthew Digby Wyatt and Owen Jones on the Byzantine and medieval courts at the Crystal Palace and from 1854 onwards made exploratory expeditions to the east, the first important one being in 1856 when he assisted Charles Newton with the excavations at Halikarnassos. In parallel he commenced independent practice as an architect first coming into prominence when he was placed second in the competition for Lille Cathedral in 1855. From at least 1859 he was closely associated with William Burges whose sister Mary he married in that year.

From 1862 to 1869 Pullan was employed by the Society of Dilettanti on excavations at Teos and Priene and at Gulpinar in Turkey. While engaged on that work he made intensive studies of the Byzantine architecture in that area, joining forces with the Frenchman Charles Texier to publish 'L'Architecture Byzantine' in 1864 and 'The Principles Ruins of Asia Minor' in 1865.

Pullan maintained an office at 15 Clifford's Inn London and after his return from the east entered most of the major competitions and was invited to take part in a number of limited ones including that for Truro, but without success. His few executed works are mainly on the Continent, and much of his time appears to have been devoted to his books on Asia Minor (1876), eastern cities and Italian towns (1879) and a considerable number of books on church architecture, decoration and furnishing from 1873 onwards. On Burges's' death in 1881 the Pullans inherited Tower House, on which Pullan published a book in 1886. He also inherited Burges's practice, and with Burges's assistant, John Starling Chapple, he completed the work in hand and published several folio's of Burges's drawings in 1883-87. He hoped to retain the patronage of the 3rd Marquess of Bute for the unbuilt Byzantine church at Troon - subsequently built at Galston - but the Marquess found him 'rather a brute' and appointed Robert Rowand Anderson.

In his last years Pullan suffered severely from bronchitis. He died at Brighton, 30 April 1888.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architect:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 115, Clifford's Inn, London, EnglandBusinessc. 1860  

Employment and Training


The following individuals or organisations employed or trained this architect (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 3Richard Lanec. 1845Before 1853Pupil 
Item 2 of 3Owen Jones18531853Assistant 
Item 3 of 3Matthew Digby Wyatt18531853Assistant 

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 21881Glasgow Municipal Buildings  GlasgowScotlandSecond competition design - not successful
Item 2 of 21882Byzantine ChapelTroon AyrshireScotlandDrew up proposals with Anderson


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this architect:
Item 1 of 3DNB Dictionary of National Biography   
Item 2 of 3Grove Dictionary of Art Grove Dictionary of Art   
Item 3 of 3Lucas, C1886Deux architectes Anglais: william Burges and Richard Popplewell Pullan Paris