Basic Biographical Details
|Name: ||William ('Bill') Nimmo |
|Designation: ||Architect |
|Born: ||1 April 1929 |
|Died: ||28 January 2010 |
|Bio Notes: ||William ('Bill') Nimmo was born on 1 April 1929, the son of David Nimmo, master joiner, and his wife, Euphemia Tasker Wilson. He was educated at Wishaw High School. He studied architecture at Glasgow School of Art where he won the Rowand Anderson medal in his final year and at the Royal Technical College. He was elected ARIBA in 1954. He set up his own practice in Wishaw with Thomas Miller as assistant. About this time he married May Morrison Hannah. Two years of National Service followed which was spent with the British Army in Germany, accompanied by his new wife. His time in Germany was spent masterminding the design and construction of new barracks for the soldiers and thousands of houses both for the British Army and German civilians. |
After completing his National Service he returned to Wishaw and was soon joined by Jean Welsh as William Nimmo & Partners. Welsh was one of the first women to qualify as an architect in Scotland.
In 1969 the practice moved to Glasgow and two years later the Wishaw office closed. Large-scale commissions followed including schools, factories and two new whisky distilleries for Seagram. In 1973 James Robertson was assumed into partnership followed by John Carswell in 1975 and by a number of other partners in the late 1980s. David Nimmo, son of William Nimmo, was assumed into partnership in 1993.
The practice was involved with a number of very large projects including the redevlopment of the Faslane Submarine Base on the Clyde. Nimmo also undertook various jobs in London.
David Nimmo describes his father: 'My father was interested in architecture, and certainly had strong views, but he was probably more passionate about business, project management (he was a natural leader) and quality of construction. While he won the silver medal at Glasgow School of Art, he regarded others as more able designers, and consequently encouraged them to get on with it while he looked for work and ran the practice.'
He retired in 1997 and was elected a Fellow of the RIAS and of the Royal Society of Arts, the latter in recognition of his work in London. He was also made a freeman of the City of London, and was awarded the CBE.
Nimmo is remembered in his obituary as 'tall, elegant, engaging and forceful'. Outwith his professional life, he had wide interests. He was fascinated by politics. Not long before his death, he had cruised by Martha's Vineyard and visited the Crusader Castles on Malta. He died on 28 January 2010 after a short battle with leukaemia, survived by his wife Mae (an artist) and their sons David (who had followed him into architectural practice), Robert and Wilson and daughter Sandra.
Private and Business Addresses
|The following private or business addresses are associated with this architect:|
| ||Address||Type||Date from||Date to||Notes|
|Auchenglen House, Auchenglen Road, Braidwood, Lanarkshire, Scotland||Private|| ||2010|| |
|Caldersyde, Glen Road, Wishaw, Lanarkshire, Scotland||Private||c. 1954|| || |
|Commercial Bank Buildings, Carluke|| ||8 February 1957|| ||per Builder, p294|
|Commercial Bank Buildings, Wishaw, Lanarkshire, Scotland||Business||1964 *|| || |
|15, Queen's Crescent , Glasgow, Scotland||Business||1979 *|| || |
|77, Fitzroy Place, Glasgow, Scotland||Business||c. 1987|| || |
* 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):|
| ||Name||Date from||Date to||Position||Notes|
|William Nimmo & Partners||1956||1996||Partner|| |
Buildings and Designs
|The following books contain references to this architect:|
|Bailey, Rebecca M||1996||Scottish architects' papers: a source book|| ||Edinburgh: The Rutland Press||p146|
|RIBA||1954||RIBA Kalendar 1953-54|| || || |
|RIBA||1964||The RIBA Kalendar 1963-64|| || || |
|RIBA||1970||RIBA Directory 1970|| || || |
|RIBA||1979||Directory of members|| || || |
|RIBA||1987||RIBA Directory of Members 1987|| || || |
|The following periodicals contain references to this architect:|
| ||Periodical Name||Date||Edition||Publisher||Notes|
|Builder||8 February 1957|| || ||p294|
|RIAS Quarterly||2010||Spring||Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS)||p.112: obituary|