Basic Biographical Details

Name: Henry Erskine Hill
Born: 11 April 1902
Died: 13 June 1989
Bio Notes: Henry Erskine Hill was born on 11 April 1902 in Glasgow and was baptised on 8 May 1902 by his father, also Henry Erskine Hill, who was incumbent at St Georgeís Episcopal Church there. The family moved to Aberdeen when Erskine Hill senior took up the position of rector to St Andrews Church, the status of which was to be raised to Cathedral. In 1914 Erskine Hill senior became the first Provost. In this post he became familiar with William Kelly who was advisor to the Diocese on the building of a new cathedral for Aberdeen. Through this connection Erskine Hill junior became articled to Kelly & Nicol of Aberdeen in 1920.

After eighteen months in the office of Kelly & Nicol, he commenced full-time study at Aberdeen School of Architecture, transferring to Leeds to complete the five-year course. Hillís address after the move was The Vicarage, Horbury, Wakefield which was the home of his uncle, Rev E B Hill, who was vicar of Horbury and who was elevated to the Canonry of Wakefield in 1923. Thereafter Erskine Hill spent a year in the office of G F Bowman & Son in Leeds to complete his apprenticeship, taking the final exam in Leeds in July 1926. He passed the Professional Practice exam in London a year later and left Bowman's office to take up an appointment as assistant to Harry Wilson, also of Leeds. He was still in the latter office when he was admitted ARIBA on 5 December 1927, his proposers being Percy Robinson, James Parish and Thomas Butler Wilson, all of Leeds. His nomination papers state that he had spent six weeks measuring in France and Italy in summer 1925.

In 1928 Erskine Hill junior formed a partnership with Norval Rowallan Paxton who specialised in church buildings. Erskine Hill provided a set of drawings for converting St Andrews in Aberdeen Ďinto a building that will be worthy of Memorial to Bishop Seaburyí. The Cathedral authorities decided to take the advice of an expert and Sir Robert Lorimer was nominated to visit and discuss the proposals with the Trustees of St Andrews. Lorimer subsequently drew up a report criticising Hillís plans and suggesting that the site should be changed. He estimated that the cost of a new building on a new site would be £200,000. However the Trustees rejected Lorimerís plans. Hill was eventually paid a fee of £100 for his plans and Sir Ninian Comper was appointed to re-draw the whole building.

Henry Erskine Hill died on 13 June 1989.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this :
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 1Horbury Vicarage, Horbury, nr Wakefield, Yorkshire, EnglandPrivate1927 *  

* 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 5Kelly & NicolEarly 1920Late 1921Apprenticefor 18 months
Item 2 of 5G F Bowman & SonMid 1926Mid 1927Apprentice 
Item 3 of 5Harry WilsonLate 1927 Assistant 
Item 4 of 5G F Bowman & SonMid 1927Mid 1927Assistant 
Item 5 of 5Paxton & Hillc. 1928 Partner 


RIBA Proposers

The following individuals proposed this for RIBA membership (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate proposedNotes
Item 1 of 3James Parish5 December 1927for Associateship
Item 2 of 3Percy Robinson5 December 1927for Associateship
Item 3 of 3Thomas Butler Wilson5 December 1927for Associateship


Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this :
 SourceArchive NameSource Catalogue No.Notes
Item 1 of 1RIBA Archive, Victoria & Albert MuseumRIBA Nomination Papers A no4119 (box 7)