Basic Biographical Details

Name: Findlay & Stewart
Born: 1928
Died: c. 1930
Bio Notes: James Findlay was articled to John Murray Robertson, remaining with him to become chief draughtsman. He succeeded to his practice when he died in 1901.

In 1903 Findlay took on David Smith as his chief assistant. Smith was born at Montrose on 25 July 1878 and was educated at Montrose Academy. In 1895 he was articled to McCulloch & Jamieson in Dundee, leaving at the end of his apprenticeship in 1899 to work for Hugh Gavin of Arbroath. During those years he studied at the Dundee Technical Institute under Patrick H Thoms from 1898 until 1900 when he moved to Edinburgh to work for Victor Daniel Horsburgh so that he could study at the School of Applied Art. He obtained a place in the office of Murray Robertson in Dundee 1901-02. He then succeeded in gaining a place first in the LCC architects' department which enabled him to study at the Regent Street Polytechnic. From there he moved to the office of Leonard Stokes from which he won the Tite Prize. Findlay invited him to return to Dundee to assist with the Medical School and the Caird Cancer Pavilion, the latter being largely to his design. While chief assistant with Findlay he built an experimental low cost house, The Sheilin at Wormit (the '100 house') for his own occupation. He was admitted LRIBA on 20 February 1911, his proposers being Godfrey Shepherd, Thoms and William Fleming Wilkie.

Smith remained with Findlay's practice thereafter. He appeared in 'Who's who in Architecture' from 1914: he had clients of his own, but was generally content to remain a back-room architect concentrating on the design work of the practice.

In 1928 Smith became a partner, and Findlay and Smith merged their practice with that of Ogilvy and Stewart. This firm comprised Gilbert Francis Molyneux Ogilvy who had closed his London practice in the early years of the First World War, and Nelson T Stewart of the joiners and builders John Stewart & Sons, 16 Forfar Road, Dundee, which had specialised in shop and office buildings and had provided a design and build service since about 1911. In 1918 or 1919 Gilbert Ogilvy had returned to Dundee, most of his practice having come to him through his elder brother, Sir Herbert Kinnaird Ogilvy of Baldovan and of Shiell & Small, solicitors. In 1920 he had inherited the estate of Winton, East Lothian from his aunt, but continued his Dundee practice which was based in his brother's office at 5 Bank Street, merging it with that of Nelson T Stewart about 1925. Of that partnership both Ogilvy's son, Sir David and Henry Pearce Robbie observed that Stewart did not have much design sense but was a sound practical man from his experience with his father's building business: Ogilvy's interest in the firm was at times ephemeral and he tended to undertake only commissions in which there was a personal interest leaving the rest to Stewart. At the time of the merger with Findlay and Smith he withdrew because of the severity of the recession observing that in the circumstances it was wrong to carry on a practice he could afford to do without.

The practice title was briefly Findlay & Stewart, but became Findlay Stewart & Robbie c.1930 when it was joined by Henry Pearce Robbie who had won the Alexander Thomson travelling scholarship in 1925 and had succeeded Vernon Constable as lecturer in architecture at the Technical College, also in 1930.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this :
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 1Dundee, ScotlandBusiness   

Employment and Training

Employees or Pupils

The following individuals were employed or trained by this (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 3James Findlay1928c. 1930Partner 
Item 2 of 3David Smith1928c. 1930Partner 
Item 3 of 3Nelson T Stewart1928c. 1930Partner 

Buildings and Designs

This 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 21928Dundee Garden City Association Kingsway Site  DundeeScotlandHouses - commenced when Stewart was in partnership with Ogilvy, and presumably completed in partnership with Findlay, in collaboration with William Curtis Green
Item 2 of 21928St Fillan's UF ChurchNewport-on-Tay FifeScotlandProposed additions to church and to manse


Currently, there are no references for this . 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.