Basic Biographical Details

Name: Joseph Lea Gleave
Born: 5 August 1907
Died: 16 January 1965
Bio Notes: Joseph Lea Gleave was born in Manchester in 1907, the son of James Gleave, farmer, and his wife Hannah Lea. He studied studied part-time at Manchester University School of Architecture from September 1923 to September 1927. He was articled to James Theodore Halliday in Manchester and then subsequently an assistant to Francis Jones (1927-28) and Thomas Cecil Howitt in Nottingham (1928-30). From February 1930-May 1931 he was an assistant with Jones & Dalrymple.

In 1931 at the age of twenty-three he won the international competition for a monument to Christopher Columbus in the Dominican Republic and was awarded the University's degree of MA honoris causa in the same year: this led in 1932 to his appointment as senior assistant on the School of Architecture at Edinburgh College of Art, quickly followed by promotion to head of the School of Architecture and Town Planning in 1935. Gleave's period as Head of School was interrupted by war service in Ack Ack Command in which he reached the rank of Lieutenant Colonel: initially he had formed the 94th Ack Ack manned by the College's remaining students. On his return to the School he had redesigned the Columbus Memorial in 1946-47 and is said to have assisted his brother-in-law William Hardie Kininmonth with the design of Renfrew Airport.

In 1948 Andrew Graham Henderson invited Gleave to join the Keppie & Henderson practice which then became Keppie Henderson & J L Gleave, Gleave taking over Henderson's house, Lincluden, at 14 Dalziel Drive. He was initially engaged on housing, schools and the new Engineering Building of the University of Glasgow but quickly made himself the leading designer of hospitals in Scotland with the innovative Vale of Leven Hospital built in 1952-55 and generally revitalised the practice recruiting the best students from his friend John Needham, Head of School at Dundee.

Although the practice was hugely successful, serious differences arose between Gleave and the two senior partners, Henderson and Alex Smellie. These arose from Gleave's predilection for all-night working to meet deadlines (he came in to review the results at 4am) and Henderson's preference for multi-disciplinary teams and a more ordered work-flow. Matters came to a head early in 1958 after he won the competition for the Queen Mother's Hospital for Children at Yorkhill, Glasgow in his own name and he left to establish his own practice, J L Gleave, taking Ivor Dorward and the commissions for the Queen Mother Hospital and Prestwick Airport with him.

Gleave was proposed for election as ARIBA in 1931 by James Theodore Halliday Francis Innes Jones and John Hubert Worthington but does not appear to have been admitted until 1953, just after establishing his own practice the year before. He was elected RSA in 1959. He served on the councils of both the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland and the Royal Institute of British Architects and was appointed to the Royal Fine Art Commission, Edinburgh's Princes Street Panel and the Historic Buildings Council; he was also the University of Glasgow's Consulting Architect for the redevelopment of Hillhead and together with Ivor Dorward designed a number of the buildings.

Gleave's hectic life style eventually affected his health. Cancer was diagnosed in the spring of 1964 and he died in the Western Infirmary in Glasgow on 16 January 1965. He was survived by his wife Margaret Grierson Sutherland and his son David, also an architect and his daughter Carolyn, an interior designer. The practice was continued by Ivor Dorward and A S Matheson who had been assumed into partnership in 1963, the name changing to Dorward Matheson Gleave & Partners. David Gleave joined in 1987 when the name changed again to Matheson Gleave Partnership, prior to being merged with Young & Gault.

Gleave's Columbus Monument was eventually completed in 1992 twenty years after his death.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this :
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 390, Oxford Road, Manchester, EnglandBusiness1931  
Item 2 of 38, Durley Avenue, Park Road, Timperley , Cheshire, EnglandPrivate1931 *  
Item 3 of 31, Great Stuart Street, Edinburgh, ScotlandBusinessc. 1938c. 1940 

* earliest date known from documented sources.

Employment and Training


The following individuals or organisations employed or trained this (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 5James Theodore Halliday  Apprentice 
Item 2 of 5Thomas Cecil Howitt  Assistant 
Item 3 of 5Francis Jones  Assistant 
Item 4 of 5Keppie Henderson & J L Gleave19481958Partner 
Item 5 of 5J L Gleave & Partners19581964Partner 

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 2John Edgar McCulloch1940s(?) Assistant 
Item 2 of 2Hugh Crawford Stewart Ferguson19611963Assistant 


RIBA Proposers

The following individuals proposed this for RIBA membership (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate proposedNotes
Item 1 of 3James Theodore Halliday2 December 1931For Associateship
Item 2 of 3Francis Jones2 December 1931For Associateship
Item 3 of 3John Hubert Worthington2 December 1931For Associateship

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 341931(?)Christopher Columbus Memorial  Dominican Republic Won competition for a memorial to Christopher Columbus in 1931 for the project to become dormant for the next fifteen years until 1946.
Item 2 of 341949University of Glasgow, Engineering Building  GlasgowScotlandFor alterations and additions
Item 3 of 34After 1949Belford HospitalFort William Inverness-shireScotland 
Item 4 of 341950Carnwadric Church and Hall  GlasgowScotlandConflict of information with 'Buildings of Scotland'. This is given in 'Scottish Churches in the Post-War Period'. Plans prepared before War and construction after.
Item 5 of 34After 1950Clydesdale BankPossilpark GlasgowScotland 
Item 6 of 34After 1950University of Glasgow, Departments of Geography, Geology and Zoology  GlasgowScotland 
Item 7 of 34After 1950University of Glasgow, Quincentenary Memorial Gates  GlasgowScotland 
Item 8 of 34After 1950Whitby County Modern SchoolWhitby YorkshireEngland 
Item 9 of 341951Clydesdale Bank Headquarters, St Vincent Place  GlasgowScotlandAlterations and additions
Item 10 of 341951Drumchapel Baking and Biscuit Factory, Great Western Road  LanarkshireScotland 
Item 11 of 341951Vale of Leven HospitalAlexandria DunbartonshireScotland 
Item 12 of 34After 1953Lightburn Secondary SchoolLightburn GlasgowScotland 
Item 13 of 341954Anderson's College Medical SchoolKelvinhaugh GlasgowScotlandAlterations and additions
Item 14 of 341954Clackmannan County HospitalAlloa ClackmannanshireScotlandE addition. Outpatients Department etc
Item 15 of 341954Prestwick International Airport  AyrshireScotlandCentral (Control) Tower Buildings
Item 16 of 341954St Andrew's Secondary SchoolCarntyne and Robroyston GlasgowScotland 
Item 17 of 341956Burroughs Adding Machines FactoryCumbernauld LanarkshireScotland 
Item 18 of 341956Fleurs Avenue School  GlasgowScotland 
Item 19 of 341956Littlewoods Store  GlasgowScotland 
Item 20 of 341957Provanhill Primary SchoolEasterhouse GlasgowScotland 
Item 21 of 341957University of Glasgow, James Watt Engineering Building  GlasgowScotland 
Item 22 of 3427 May 1960Pollokshaws CDA Unit 1Pollokshaws GlasgowScotlandGleave died in 1965 and practiced carried on by Dorward and Matheson.
Item 23 of 341961Blackfriars Primary SchoolGorbals GlasgowScotland 
Item 24 of 341961Inverness County BuildingsInverness Inverness-shireScotland 
Item 25 of 341961Pollokshaws CDA Unit 1 Area APollokshaws GlasgowScotland 
Item 26 of 341961Pollokshaws CDA Unit 1 Area BPollokshaws GlasgowScotland 
Item 27 of 341961St Francis RC SchoolGorbals GlasgowScotland 
Item 28 of 341962Belford HospitalFort William Inverness-shireScotland 
Item 29 of 341964Pollokshaws CDA Unit 1 Area APollokshaws GlasgowScotland 
Item 30 of 341964Pollokshaws CDA Unit 1 Area BPollokshaws GlasgowScotland 
Item 31 of 341964Prestwick International Airport  AyrshireScotlandFurther buildings
Item 32 of 341964Queen Mother's Hospital  GlasgowScotland 
Item 33 of 34After 1964University of Glasgow, Refectory  GlasgowScotlandCo-ordinated the project.
Item 34 of 3415 April 1966Shopping Centre, PollokshawsPollokshaws GlasgowScotlandJ L Gleave listed as architect in Building, p.195 but died in January of this year


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this :
Item 1 of 6Glendinning, Miles1997Rebuilding Scotland: The Postwar Vision, 1945-75  Tuckwell Press Ltdp12, p169 Vale of Leven Hospital
Item 2 of 6Post Office Directories     
Item 3 of 6RIBA1939The RIBA Kalendar 1939-1940 London: Royal Institute of British Architects 
Item 4 of 6RIBA1950The RIBA Kalendar 1950-1951 London: Royal Institute of British Architects 
Item 5 of 6Stark, David2004Charles Rennie Mackintosh and Co., 1854 to 2004 Glasgow: Stenlake Publishing Ltd 
Item 6 of   

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this :
 SourceArchive NameSource Catalogue No.Notes
Item 1 of 2Courtesy of David GleaveInformation via email Sent January 2012
Item 2 of 2Professor David M Walker personal archiveProfessor David M Walker, notes and collection of archive material Unattributed obituary in DMW archive