Basic Site Details

Name: National Bank of Scotland
City or county: Glasgow
Country: Scotland
Status: B Listed
Grid ref:
Notes: The Bank held a limited competition, inviting seven architects to submit plans. The letter to the architects from the Bank, 13 October 1898, reads:

'I send herewith a plan of a site at the corner of Buchanan and St Vincent Streets in Glasgow, owned by the Bank, upon which my Directors have resolve to erect new buildings, and I am instructed to invite you to submit for their consideration, sketch plans of such a building as you would recommend should be placed on the ground.

Should you see your way to accept this invitation, I may mention for your guidance the following main points which my Directors have in view, viz:-- The utilization of the site to the best possible advantage for the purpose of providing (a) the most complete and approved office accommodation for the Bank's business, including vault and safe accommodation, without any unnecessary waste of valuable ground floor space; and (b) lettable shops and offices of the highest class, thoroughly lighted and ventilated, and provided with all the last modern conveniences and appliances in the matter of hoists and suchlike. Special attention should be given to the question of the rental to be obtained from these portions of the premises which may be let.

The question of whether the entrance to the Bank should be from Buchanan Street or St Vincent Street, or at the corner, is left to the architects; but it may be mentioned that if shops can be provided, these should be in Buchanan Street.

The height to which the building should be carried is also a point regarding which my Directors are prepared to consider suggestions.

My Directors do not favour the idea of anything of the nature of elaborate decoration of the external part of the building, and have expressed a leaning towards a thoroughly businesslike building of the highest class and of chaste design.

It is desired that plans should be drawn to the same scale as that adopted for the enclosed, and left uncoloured; and that they should be accompanied by one approximate estimate of the probable cost of erecting buildings in accordance with them.

My Directors offer to each architect who may submit plans, an honorarium of one hundred guineas, but this grant would not, of course, be paid to the architect who may be entrusted with the carrying out of the design which may be finally adopted.

As time is of much importance, it is stipulated that the plans sent in response to this invitation must be lodged before the close of this year.

If any other general information is desired for your guidance, I shall be glad to provide it. Meantime I would only add that the site referred to is one of the most important in the centre of Glasgow.

Names of Architects-
1, Edinburgh:
Dr Rowand Anderson
Mr T P Marwick
Messrs Sydney Mitchell & Wilson
Messrs Peddie & Washington Browne

2, Glasgow:
Messrs Honeyman & Keppie
Mr J J Burnet
Mr James Thomson'

(National Bank Board Minutes, NS/22/35)

Alternative Names

The following alternative names are associated with this building/design:
 NameCurrent name?Notes
Item 1 of 1Co-operative Bank Current name

Building Type Classification

The building is classified under the following categories:
 ClassificationOriginal classification?Notes
Item 1 of 1Bank  

Street Addresses

The following street addresses are associated with this building:
 AddressMain entrance?Notes
Item 1 of 2131-137, Buchanan StreetYes 
Item 2 of 247, St Vincent StreetYes 


The following date-based events are associated with this building:
 FromToEvent typeNotes
Item 1 of 81898 Competition held 
Item 2 of 810 January 1899  Rowand Anderson and Peddie & Washington Browne's competition entries recommeded to Board
Item 3 of 812 January 1899  Board decide to adopt plans by Peddie & Washington Browne
Item 4 of 819 October 1899  Tenders for approximately 46,837 accepted
Item 5 of 812 April 1900  Decision to use Plean Stone
Item 6 of 81902  Burnet's competition design exhibited
Item 7 of 85 December 1952 * Alteration/conversionPlans in hand for alterations and additions
Item 8 of 820 November 1953 * Alterations and additionsPlans in hand

* earliest date known from documented sources.


Design and Construction

The following individuals or organisations have carried out design/construction work. Where architects or practices worked together, matching letters appear beside their names in the Partnership Group column.
 NameRolePartnership GroupFromToNotes
Item 1 of 17(Sir) Robert Rowand Anderson  1898 Placed second in competition
Item 2 of 17Thomas Purves Marwick  1898 Unsuccessful competition design
Item 3 of 17George Washington Browne A18981900Won in competition and secured job
Item 4 of 17James Forbes Smith A18981900As assistant to Peddie & Washington Browne on winning competition design
Item 5 of 17John More Dick Peddie A18981900Won in competition and secured job
Item 6 of 17Peddie & Washington Browne A18981900Won in competition and secured job
Item 7 of 17Charles Rennie Mackintosh B1898 Unsuccessful competition design
Item 8 of 17Honeyman & Keppie B1898 Unsuccessful competition design
Item 9 of 17John Honeyman B1898 Unsuccessful competition design
Item 10 of 17John Keppie B1898 Unsuccessful competition design
Item 11 of 17(Sir) John James Burnet C1898 Unsuccessful competition design
Item 12 of 17John Burnet & Son C1898 Unsuccessful competition design
Item 13 of 17Arthur George Sydney Mitchell D1898 Unsuccessful competition design
Item 14 of 17George Wilson D1898 Unsuccessful competition design
Item 15 of 17Sydney Mitchell & Wilson D1898 Unsuccessful competition design
Item 16 of 17National Bank of Scotland Architects  5 December 1952 * Alterations and additions
Item 17 of 17Alexander Pye  20 November 1953 * Plans in hand for alterations and additions

* earliest date known from documented sources.


The following individuals or organisations have commissioned work on this building/design:
Item 1 of 1National Bank of Scotland 


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this building:
Item 1 of 4Royal Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts1901   728 (Burnet & Son design)
Item 2 of 4RSA1900   515 (Honeyman and Keppie design)
Item 3 of 4RSA1902   753
Item 4 of 4Stark, David2004Charles Rennie Mackintosh and Co., 1854 to 2004 Glasgow: Stenlake Publishing Ltdpp144-5

Periodical References

The following periodicals contain references to this building:
 Periodical NameDateEditionPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 4Builder5 December 1952  p852
Item 2 of 4Builder20 November 1953  p814
Item 3 of 4Builders Journal28 November 1906   
Item 4 of 4Building Industries15 June 1889   

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this building:
 SourceArchive nameSource catalogue no.Notes
Item 1 of 6Historic Environment ScotlandListed Buildings Register33130 
Item 2 of 6Hunterian MuseumMackintosh Collection Drawings- elevations
Item 3 of 6Keppie Design (David Stark)Database of jobs by Honeyman and Keppie No 285
Item 4 of 6National Monuments Record of Scotland/NMRS, RCAHMSDick Peddie and McKay Collection DPm 1890/82/5-7
Item 5 of 6RIBA Archive, Victoria & Albert MuseumRIBA Nomination Papers James Forbes Smith: L v11 no656 (microfilm reel 33)
Item 6 of 6Royal Bank of Scotland Group ArchivesNational Bank Board Minutes 13 October 1898, 10 January 1899, 12 January 1899, 13 January 1899, 26 January 1899, 19 October 1899, 12 April 1900