Basic Biographical Details

Name: William Alistair Miller
Designation: Architect
Born: 15 February 1931
Died: 2021
Bio Notes: William Alistair Miller (known as Alistair) was born on 15 February 1931. He studied at the School of Architecture, Edinburgh College of Art, graduating with a diploma in 1954. From August 1954 to June 1957 he worked in the school building development team, the Scottish Education Department on an 'unestablished basic grade'. He was admitted ARIBA in 1955 and ARIAS in 1960. In July 1957 he moved to the office of Eric Hall as assistant but was promoted to principal in April 1959 when the practice became Eric Hall & Partners.

He was assumed into partnership by Eric Hall in 1963. Hall merged his practice with that of Alan Reiach and from April of that year Miller was a principal in the combined practice, Alan Reiach Eric Hall. He was admitted FRIBA in 1968. At that time he notes that he had recently 'retired' from giving Management lectures to students prior to their Part III exam in Strathclyde, Edinburgh and Aberdeen.

Miller's work in the practice of Alan Reiach, Eric Hall & Partners was almost entirely related to educational buildings. His first job with Eric Hall was the school at Cargenbridge in Kirkcudbrightshire. This used the 'Integrid' form of construction as did most subsequent school projects. About 1961 Miller formed a 'schools group ' within the practice. The group began with four school in Ayrshire valued at 1.8m and used the 'Integrid' system. A senior secondary school in Midlothian used the same system about this time. Miller states in his Fellowship Nomination paper that he either controlled the job architects on the jobs or was himself directly responsible. By the later 1960s work had spread to Northern Ireland and Miller tool personal charge of the Technical College of Limavady (Cost 350,000) and another College in Colleraine (450,000) as well as controlling other jobs architects on contracts work a further 1.25m. Miller's schools group was also working on a '2nd generation' school in Ayrshire worth 750,000.

Besides his work in the schools group, Miller was involved in establishing an 'efficient growing office'. In July 1968 he had recently completed a the office manual (with other partners), which was base don the RIBA's plan of work. He stated that 'an awarenes of the need to improve performance has guided my general partner activities'.

He retired in 1991 though may have continued in some capacity with the firm. In 1994 he wrote to the RIBA stating that he was now' totally retired' and wished to resign. In the 1990s he was a director of the Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop and Rider Properties but has since resigned these appointments.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architect:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 4Gartferry Hotel, Ayr, Ayrshire, ScotlandPrivate1954 *After 1957 
Item 2 of 4Rock House, Calton Hill, Edinburgh, ScotlandBusiness(?)c. 1960  
Item 3 of 449, Mayfield Road, Edinburgh, ScotlandPrivatec. 1960After 1968 
Item 4 of 416, Moray Place, Edinburgh, ScotlandBusinessc. 1964  

* earliest date known from documented sources.

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 4Reiach Hall Blyth (Iran)  Partner 
Item 2 of 4Eric Walker HallJuly 1957March 1959Assistant 
Item 3 of 4Eric Hall & Partners (Eric W Hall & Partners)19601965Partner 
Item 4 of 4Alan Reiach Eric Hall & PartnersApril 1965(?) Partner 


RIBA Proposers

The following individuals proposed this architect for RIBA membership (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate proposedNotes
Item 1 of 3Peter Burnett Caird17 July 1968For Fellowship
Item 2 of 3Alan Reiach17 July 1968For Fellowship
Item 3 of 3James Stuart Renton17 July 1968For Fellowship

RIBA Proposals

This architect proposed the following individuals for RIBA membership (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate proposedNotes
Item 1 of 1James Stuart Renton16 July 1969For Fellowship

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 411959Primary SchoolCargenbridge KirkcudbrightshireScotlandJob architect with Eric Hall
Item 2 of 411959Wick High SchoolWick CaithnessScotlandExtensions - responsible for detailing and supervision of extensions.
Item 3 of 41After 1959Technical CollegeLimavady LondonderryNorthern IrelandIn charge of project as leader of the schools group within the practice.
Item 4 of 411960sKnox Academy, Primary SchoolHaddington East LothianScotland 
Item 5 of 411960sSecondary SchoolKilmarnock AyrshireScotland 
Item 6 of 411960sSenior Secondary SchoolKilwinning AyrshireScotland 
Item 7 of 411960Currie High SchoolCurrie MidlothianScotlandIn charge of this job as leader of the 'schools group' in the practice
Item 8 of 411961Dornoch Higher Grade School and headmaster's houseDornoch SutherlandScotland 
Item 9 of 411962Group of houses, Longstone Road  EdinburghScotland 
Item 10 of 411962Haddington 'face-lift' improvement schemeHaddington East LothianScotlandWork begun by Eric Hall - probably comntinued after amalgamation with Alan Reiach
Item 11 of 411962Haddington Central Area redevelopmentHaddington East LothianScotland 
Item 12 of 411964Fire StationHaddington East LothianScotland 
Item 13 of 411964Preparatory School for Girls, St George's School for Girls  EdinburghScotlandBegan the commission. Completed when practice amalgamated by Alan Reiach.
Item 14 of 411965General Post Office  EdinburghScotlandAlterations to public office
Item 15 of 411965St Mungo's Church and hallCumbernauld LanarkshireScotland 
Item 16 of 41After 1965Bow Yett housing developmentTorphichen West LothianScotland 
Item 17 of 411968Heriot-Watt University, Maths, Physics and Chemistry departmentsRiccarton MidlothianScotland 
Item 18 of 411968Heriot-Watt University, Riccarton CampusRiccarton Midlothian  
Item 19 of 411969Bush House, Tropical Veterinary Medicine CentreRoslin MidlothianScotland 
Item 20 of 411969University of Edinburgh, Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons  EdinburghScotlandAdditions
Item 21 of 41Late 1960sColeraine Technical CollegeColeraine LondonerryNorthern IrelandPartner in charge
Item 22 of 411970Festival Centre, Castle Terrace site  Edinburgh, MidlothianScotlandThird scheme for Festival Centre
Item 23 of 411970Housing schemes for SSHA   ScotlandWork planned.
Item 24 of 411970Office block, 10 and 12 Young Street  EdinburghScotland 
Item 25 of 411970Police Headquarters  EdinburghScotlandPerhaps not involved?
Item 26 of 411970University of Stirling, sports buildings with swimming poolStirling StirlingshireScotlandWork planned.
Item 27 of 411970Veterinary College  EdinburghScotlandWork planned.
Item 28 of 411970Western General Hospital, Human Genetics block  EdinburghScotland 
Item 29 of 411971Orchard Brae House  EdinburghScotland 
Item 30 of 411972Heriot-Watt University, Petroleum Engineering DepartmentRiccarton EdinburghScotlandPhase I
Item 31 of 411972Offices at North St David Street, west side  EdinburghScotland 
Item 32 of 411972SSHA housing, BranshillNew Sauchie ClackmannanshireScotland 
Item 33 of 411973Heriot-Watt University, Department of Civil EngineeringRiccarton MidlothianScotland 
Item 34 of 411973Heriot-Watt University, Mechanical Engineering DepartmentRiccarton MidlothianScotland 
Item 35 of 411973Office development for Alex Lawrie  GlasgowScotland 
Item 36 of 411974Inverleith HouseInverleith EdinburghScotlandExtension
Item 37 of 41Before 1975Heriot-Watt University, Riccarton Campus, students' hostelsRiccarton MidliothianScotland 
Item 38 of 41Before 1975University of St Andrews, students' hostelSt Andrews FifeScotland 
Item 39 of 411977George Wolfe HouseTorphichen West LothianScotlandAddition
Item 40 of 411978Challenger LodgeTrinity EdinburghScotlandAddition of SW wing for St Columba's Hospice
Item 41 of 411979Syntex Research CentreRiccarton MidlothianScotlandPhase I


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this architect:
Item 1 of 5Bailey, Rebecca M1996Scottish architects' papers: a source book Edinburgh: The Rutland Pressp132
Item 2 of 5RIBA1954RIBA Kalendar 1953-54   
Item 3 of 5RIBA1960The RIBA Kalendar 1959-19601959-1960  
Item 4 of 5RIBA1964The RIBA Kalendar 1964-65   
Item 5 of 5RIBA1970RIBA Directory 1970   

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this architect:
 SourceArchive NameSource Catalogue No.Notes
Item 1 of 3Interview with Eric Davidson, 20 October 2010Information to Yvonne Hillyard   
Item 2 of 3RIAS, Rutland SquareRecords of membership  
Item 3 of 3RIBA Archive, Victoria & Albert MuseumRIBA Nomination Papers F no6243 (Combined Box 127)