Basic Biographical Details

Name: William Stirling I
Designation: Architect
Born: 15 October 1772
Died: 5 February 1838
Bio Notes: William Stirling I was born at Dunblane on 15 October 1772, the eldest son of James Stirling, wright and cabinetmaker, who came of a long-established Dunblane merchant family which may have had landed connections. He commenced practice as an architect builder as his father's partner c.1798, the firm then becoming James Stirling & Son, although William Stirling I practised solely under his own name from the early years of the nineteenth century. On 4 December 1803 at Kirkintilloch he married Jean Erskine, daughter of David Erskine, WS of Dundas & Wilson, who had died in 1791; her maternal grandmother was Mrs Graham of Airth, who was a Stirling of Ardoch. This brought family links with other branches of the Erskine, Stirling and Graham families, and with the related Masterton family, resulting in him gaining the architectural business of the Linlathen, Airth, Gartmore, Ardoch, Braco, Gogar and Strowan estates in addition to those of Kippendavie, Kippenross, Tillicoultry, Airthrey, Tullibody, Dunira and Cardross.

From about 1807 Stirling's practice had intermittent links with David Hamilton's. This appears to have originated at Airthrey where Stirling was replaced by Hamilton as architect but retained as contractor. Since both the calligraphy and the style of Stirling drawings becomes identical to that of the Hamilton office from about 1816, it is probable that Stirling's 'chief assistant and superintendent', his cousin William Stirling II (born c.1789), who had served his articles with him, was sent to Hamilton's office to gain experience which would bring the firm more up-to-date and designed most of the firm's work thereafter. Airth Parish Church, where they competed against Hamilton, seems to have been William II's first major design, and he appears to have done most of the designing from at least 1818, although on at least one occasion, at Lecropt, Hamilton and the Stirlings were joint architects.

From 1806 onwards Stirling began buying land and property around Dunblane and out of some eleven purchases created the small estate of Holmehill on which in 1826 he erected a fine Tudor mansionhouse, very much in the Hamilton idiom. He died on 5 February 1838 and was buried in Dunblane Cathedral Churchyard alongside his younger brother Robert who had returned from Jamaica in 1819 and had died on 27 January 1832. He probably had some part in the firm, perhaps more in an administrative capacity than an architectural one.

Stirling left a very substantial estate. In addition to the estate of Holmehill, 600 in furnishing and personal effects, and house property in Dunblane and Millrow, he left 13,338 in secured loans, bonds and accounts due and 3,300 in consolidated annuities.

The practice, though not the cabinetmaking business which seems to have been at a low ebb, was inherited by William Stirling II.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architect:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 1Dunblane, Perthshire, ScotlandPrivate/business   

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 2William Stirling IIc. 1803(?)c. 1807(?)Apprentice 
Item 2 of 2William Stirling IIBefore 18161838  

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 104 Duchally Estate  PerthshireScotlandUnspecified work; date unknown
Item 2 of 104 Gartshore EstateKirkintilloch DunbartonshireScotlandUnspecified work; date unknown
Item 3 of 1041801Logie ManseLogie StirlingshireScotlandFirst scheme
Item 4 of 104c. 1801Woodside   ScotlandAlterations and additions
Item 5 of 1041802Dunira  PerthshireScotlandBased on scheme by Henry Holland, London
Item 6 of 1041803Comrie LodgeComrie PerthshireScotland 
Item 7 of 1041803Logie ManseLogie StirlingshireScotlandExecuted scheme
Item 8 of 104c. 1803Cardross House and stables  PerthshireScotlandNew entrance and alterations and new stables
Item 9 of 104c. 1803Tullibody HouseClackmannan ClackmannanshireScotland 
Item 10 of 1041804Airth House, stable block  PerthshireScotland 
Item 11 of 1041804House for Mr Alvis   Scotland 
Item 12 of 1041804Strowan HouseCrieff (near) PerthshireScotland 
Item 13 of 1041805Alva House, stablesAlva StirlingshireScotland 
Item 14 of 1041805Logie Parish ChurchLogie StirlingshireScotlandOriginal church
Item 15 of 1041805Logie SchoolLogie StirlingshireScotland 
Item 16 of 1041806Dunblane CathedralDunblane PerthshireScotlandProposed alterations and repairs
Item 17 of 1041806Woodend House and farmMadderty PerthshireScotland 
Item 18 of 1041807Airth HouseAirth StirlingshireScotlandExecuted David Hamilton's scheme
Item 19 of 1041807Airthrey Estate (?), steading  StirlingshireScotland 
Item 20 of 1041807Doune Lodge StablesDoune PerthshireScotland 
Item 21 of 1041807Dunblane Cathedral Churchyard, schoolroomDunblane PerthshireScotland 
Item 22 of 1041807Dunblane schoolhouseDunblane PerthshireScotland 
Item 23 of 1041808Kinnaird HouseLarbert StirlingshireScotlandRepairs on original house
Item 24 of 104c. 1808Bannockburn HouseBannockburn StirlingshireScotlandRepairs
Item 25 of 1041809Airthrey Castle, Lodges  StirlingshireScotland 
Item 26 of 1041809Kippenross HouseDunblane StirlingshireScotlandScheme for enlargement executed
Item 27 of 1041810Alva ManseAlva ClackmannanshireScotlandRepairs
Item 28 of 1041810Keavil HouseDunfermline FifeScotlandAlterations
Item 29 of 1041810Methven CastleMethven PerthshireScotlandOffices
Item 30 of 104After 1810Airth SchoolAirth StirlingshireScotland 
Item 31 of 104c. 1810Graham of Gartmore MonumentPort of Menteith PerthshireScotland 
Item 32 of 1041811Logie HouseDunfermline FifeScotlandUnspecified work
Item 33 of 1041812Lecropt Manse  PerthshireScotland 
Item 34 of 1041812Monzie Castle, East LodgeCrieff PerthshireScotland 
Item 35 of 1041813Airth ManseAirth StirlingshireScotland 
Item 36 of 1041813Dunfermline AbbeyDunfermline FifeScotlandConsulted on William Stark's proposals
Item 37 of 1041814AthenaeumStirling StirlingshireScotlandDesigned building (construction was contracted to architect/builder Allan Johnstone)
Item 38 of 1041814Dunblane Cathedral, Riccarton's StileDunblane PerthshireScotland 
Item 39 of 1041814Dupplin CastleForteviot PerthshireScotlandNew south west wing built
Item 40 of 1041815Leighton LibraryDunblane PerthshireScotlandRepairs
Item 41 of 1041816KippendavieDunblane PerthshireScotlandReconstruction
Item 42 of 1041817Dunblane CathedralDunblane PerthshireScotlandSupervised repairs and restoration designed by Gillespie Graham
Item 43 of 1041817Port of Menteith MansePort of Menteith PerthshireScotland 
Item 44 of 1041818Airth Parish ChurchAirth StirlingshireScotlandSubmitted design - and scheme selected and built
Item 45 of 1041818Comrie ManseComrie PerthshireScotlandNew front block
Item 46 of 1041819Trinity Gask ManseTrinity Gask PerthshireScotlandAddition at rear
Item 47 of 1041820Linlathen HouseBroughty Ferry DundeeScotlandReconstruction and new wing
Item 48 of 1041820Rattray Parish ChurchRattray PerthshireScotlandDesign probably by him rather than William Stirling II
Item 49 of 104c. 1820Dupplin Castle, stablesForteviot PerthshireScotlandEnlargement
Item 50 of 104c. 1820House (?) for D Saddler   Scotland 
Item 51 of 1041821House, Allan ParkStirling StirlingshireScotland 
Item 52 of 1041821Kincardine in Menteith ManseKincardine in Menteith PerthshireScotland 
Item 53 of 1041821Moncreiffe House, StablesBridge of Earn PerthshireScotlandEnlargement
Item 54 of 1041821Moncreiffe InnBridge of Earn PerthshireScotlandEnlargement
Item 55 of 1041823Kippen Parish ChurchKippen StirlingshireScotland 
Item 56 of 1041823Redgorton Parish ChurchRedgorton PerthshireScotlandScheme for new aisle - not executed
Item 57 of 1041824Blairgowrie Parish ChurchBlairgowrie PerthshireScotlandProbably responsible for design
Item 58 of 1041824Culross Abbey ChurchCulross FifeScotlandExtensive repairs
Item 59 of 1041824Culross ManseCulross FifeScotlandRepairs, addition of west wing, and offices
Item 60 of 1041824Garden House  StirlingshireScotland 
Item 61 of 1041824Tibbermore ManseTibbermore PerthshireScotland 
Item 62 of 1041825Forteviot ManseForteviot PerthshireScotland 
Item 63 of 1041825Lecropt Parish ChurchLecropt PerthshireScotlandAs joint architect with David Hamilton (tenders to be submitted to either architect)
Item 64 of 104c. 1825Dron Parish ChurchDron PerthshireScotland 
Item 65 of 1041826Ardoch House, stables  PerthshireScotlandAddition
Item 66 of 1041826Colquhalzie  PerthshireScotlandNew wing
Item 67 of 1041826Crieff Old Parish ChurchCrieff PerthshireScotlandCompletion of church
Item 68 of 1041826Holmehill HouseDunblane PerthshireScotland 
Item 69 of 1041826Holmehill Lodge EastDunblane StirlingshireScotland 
Item 70 of 1041826Lecropt SchoolLecropt PerthshireScotland 
Item 71 of 1041827Tillicoultry Parish ChurchTillicoultry ClackmannanshireScotland 
Item 72 of 1041828Ardoch HouseArdoch PerthshireScotlandNew wing (attribution)
Item 73 of 1041828Red Lion InnFalkirk StirlingshireScotland 
Item 74 of 1041829Drumshoogle Farmhouse  PerthshireScotland 
Item 75 of 1041829Dunblane ManseDunblane PerthshireScotland 
Item 76 of 1041829Monzie ChurchMonzie PerthshireScotland 
Item 77 of 1041829Monzie ManseMonzie PerthshireScotlandReconstruction
Item 78 of 1041830Creich Parish ChurchCreich FifeScotland 
Item 79 of 1041830Culross Abbey HouseCulross FifeScotlandRe-roofing, new interior
Item 80 of 1041830Parish Church of ForteviotForteviot PerthshireScotlandRepairs jointly with Andrew Heiton
Item 81 of 104c. 1830Argaty EstateDoune PerthshireScotlandUnspecified work
Item 82 of 104c. 1830Arnprior Estate, farms  PerthshireScotland 
Item 83 of 104c. 1830Barbush EstateDunblane PerthshireScotlandUnspecified work
Item 84 of 104c. 1830Cowden CastleMuckart PerthshireScotlandUnspecified work
Item 85 of 104c. 1830Drummond Castle Estate  PerthshireScotlandUnspecified work
Item 86 of 104c. 1830Falkirk Heritors, work on church, manse or school (?)Falkirk StirlingshireScotlandUnspecified work on church manse or school
Item 87 of 104c. 1830Gartmore Estate  PerthshireScotlandUnspecified work
Item 88 of 104c. 1830Glentyan Estate  PerthshireScotlandUnspecified work
Item 89 of 104c. 1830House (?) for C Stewart, surgeon   Scotland 
Item 90 of 104c. 1830Manor  StirlingshireScotlandUnspecified work
Item 91 of 104c. 1830Tillicoultry House Estate, stables (?)Tillicoultry ClackmannanshireScotlandUnspecified work, probably stables
Item 92 of 1041831Inn at Bridge of AllanBridge of Allan StirlingshireScotland 
Item 93 of 1041831Parish ChurchPort of Menteith PerthshireScotlandRepairs and alterations to first church - demolished 1875
Item 94 of 1041831United Associate ChurchBridge of Teith PerthshireScotlandProvided design
Item 95 of 1041832Dunipace (Old) Parish ChurchDunipace StirlingshireScotland 
Item 96 of 1041832Keir Mains Farmhouse and Factor's house  StirlingshireScotlandFarmhouse
Item 97 of 1041832Logie ManseLogie StirlingshireScotlandAddition
Item 98 of 1041832Muckhart ManseMuckhart PerthshireScotland 
Item 99 of 1041832Obelisk to Sir David BairdTom A' Chaistel, Strowan PerthshireScotland 
Item 100 of 1041832Ochtertyre Estate, Locherlour Steading (?)Ochtertyre, near Crieff PerthshireScotlandUnspecified work
Item 101 of 1041834Colquhalzie House stables  PerthshireScotland 
Item 102 of 1041835Dunblane United Associate Church HallDunblane StirlingshireScotland 
Item 103 of 1041836Monzievaird ManseMonzievaird PerthshireScotland 
Item 104 of 1041837William Simpson's AsylumPlean/Quarter/Cushen Quarter StirlingshireScotlandBuilding completed


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this architect:
Item 1 of 5Barty, A B1944A History of Dunblane  pp 219 and 231-2
Item 2 of 5Colvin, H M1995A Biographical Dictionary of British Architects 1600-18403rd editionNew Haven and London: Yale University Press 
Item 3 of 5Love, J1928Local Antiquarian Notes and Queries Falkirk: Falkirk LibraryVolume III, p154
Item 4 of 5Pride, Glen L1999The Kingdom of Fife2nd EditionThe Rutland Pressp25, p26, p186
Item 5 of 5Walker, David1972The Stirlings of Dunblane and Falkirk: Fragments of five architectural biographies in the Bulletin of the Scottish Georgian Society, Volume 1, 1972 

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this architect:
 SourceArchive NameSource Catalogue No.Notes
Item 1 of 3 Perthshire Sasines Perthshire
Item 2 of 3Airth muniments, National Library of ScotlandPractice Accounts notebook of the Stirlings, 1801-17  
Item 3 of 3National Archives of Scotland (formerly SRO)Dunblane Sheriff Court Books 1838