Saturday, 11 May 2013

Glasgow's Necropolis Gate Design by David Hamilton

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Today I write this post today to commemorate the work of David Hamilton who was a well-known architect based in Glasgow, Scotland. He was born on May the 11th, 1768 and passed away on December the 5th, 1843. In his 75 years, he managed to create some of the fantastic buildings we walk by every day such as the 'Royal Exchange' building and 'The Nelson Monument' in the Glasgow Green. 

The Nelson Monument at Glasgow Green
David Hamilton - One of Glasgow's finest  architects

One location of particular interest to me is the Glasgow Necropolis which is a Victorian cemetery with around 3,500 monuments located to the east of St. Mungo's Cathedral. What interests me is the ornate iron gates designed by both David and James Hamilton (his son) sitting at the Bridge of Sighs to restrict access in 1838. After they had been designed, they were produced by the Edington Foundry.

The restored gates
Two men outside the gates near the Bridge of Sighs

The gate design

The Necropolis entrance gates are very detailed, telling a story within them. A symbol of the Merchants House of Clipper Ship (a high quality crafted ship designed for speed) over top the Globe with the Merchant Houses' motto, 'Toties redeuntis eodem' which means, so many returning to the same place.

The gates should remain this way thanks to 'The Freinds of Glasgow's Necropolis' who are a group of like minded people determined to keep the site in its best condition by using donations they receive from tours they give around the area. 

Some other facts about David Hamilton

  • You can find a commemorative slab for Hamilton at the Nelson Monument in Glasgow Green
  • He has been called 'The Father of the profession' in Glasgow
  • His notable works include Hutchesons' Hall, Nelson Monument in Glasgow Green & Lennox Castle
  • In 1842, David Hamilton laid the groundwork of the 'Glasgow Ship Banks', which converted too the justriciary courts and is the building is now known to us as 'The Corinthian Club' famous in Glasgow for its entertainment venues & its grand design.
  • A collection of his drawings is held at the Hunterian Art Gallery in the Glasgow University. Unfortunately  they are not on public display, but could be viewed if an appointment is made. 

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