Historic Stained Glass back in the Burgh Hall for first time in nearly 50 years!
When Maryhill Burgh Hall first opened in April 1878, pride of place up in the main hall were twenty stained glass windows showing the trades and industries of the area.
Some of the finest pieces of non-religious stained glass in Scotland, they were taken out of the building for safekeeping in 1963.
Maryhill Burgh Halls Trust has been working closely with Glasgow Museums to allow a number of the original panels to be seen again in the building they were designed for - and now, at long last, they are back!
Gordon Barr, Heritage Development Officer for the Trust, said: “It’s a dream come true to finally get to see these stunning windows where they belong - back in Maryhill and back in the Burgh Halls.
They are full of hidden details and stories - parcels addressed to Paisley, Newcastle and London sit on the platform in the Railway Workers; the Soldiers panel shows two guardsmen about to go to the Barracks Canteen; and the Canal Boatman even has a patch sewn in his trouser leg at the knee (you can even see the stitches!). As we gear up to fully re-opening the Halls, having the stained glass back in place is the perfect icing on the cake!”
Marie Stumpff, Senior Conservator for Glasgow Museums said:
“The restoration of the Maryhill Burgh Halls has provided the funding and opportunity to conserve and restore the 20 stained glass panels by Stephen Adam which depict the trades of Maryhill. This work was carried out by Scottish Glass Studios, and we are delighted with the outcome. It was a fantastic project to be involved in, giving us the opportunity to study the panels closely and find out more about their history."
"One of the panels, the Canal Boatman, which can now be seen close up in the foyer of the Halls, has been given special attention. Like all of the panels in the series, it had suffered significant paint loss. This is not an uncommon problem with stained glass of that period. Conservators were able to bring back some of the details by plating the original glass with very thin clear glass, which has been painted to enhance the original drawing. This reversible technique has re-instated lost detail and improved the readability as well as the aesthetic appearance of the picture.”
• Why are the windows important ?
The windows are not just important pieces of art history, but also social, industrial, and fashion history as well.
They show ordinary people going about their jobs - with working clothes & industrial machinery shown in incredible details.
It’s very rare for working people to be shown honestly like this - not dressed up or stylised - - plus two of the panels even feature women workers who are normally even less often seen.
For many of the panels, we know which companies they show and exactly where they are set; for some we even know who some of the people are that are depicted in them.
• What does it mean for Maryhill to have them back on display?
The stained glass has formed the centrepiece of the long-running campaign to re-open the Burgh Halls as a community facility fit for the 21st Century.
The panels - along with a number of other Maryhill-related artefacts from Glasgow Museum’s Collections - are now on display in the building.
• Where & when can I see them ?
Ten of the panels are hung up in the main hall, as close as possible to their original positions. They face the ten new stained glass panels designed in 2011 by Alec Galloway, which are designed to complement and contrast with the originals.
One panel - the Canal Boatman - has had extra restoration work done on it, and is mounted in the foyer, so visitors can get up close and see the intricate painted detail.
We’ve also created a display wall - designed by Anna Montgomery, with illustrations by David Lemm, which features illuminated small-scale copies of all twenty panels against a background of a map of the Burgh of Maryhill made of Caithness Stone.
We are running regular guided tours - details are on the website, or ring 0845 860 1878 to find out more.
The cafe is also now open, initially on Monday - Friday, 10 am - 4 pm.
Notes to Journalists
This news release is issued by Maryhill Burgh Halls Trust www.maryhillburghhalls.org.uk
Further information is available from Gordon Barr, Heritage Development Officer, 0794 081 5202 at any time or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
About the Regeneration Project
The 133 year old building has undergone a £9.6 million restoration project, which has breathed new life into the iconic Halls, saved them for the community, created a thriving centre for business, and made the place once again the focus and beating heart of Maryhill.
Maryhill Burgh Halls Trust raised this remarkable sum to secure a bright future for the treasured Halls and in so doing recapture the splendor of one of the city's best loved buildings.
The restoration work began in November 2009 and is now complete.
In November 2010, the project was awarded a prize for best contribution to Urban Regeneration in Scotland through the use of European Structural Funds at the European Structural Funds Best Practice Awards.
Maryhill Burgh Halls were the seat of municipal government in the days before Maryhill was a part of Glasgow. Built in 1878 and designed by renowned architect Duncan McNaughtan, they have lain derelict for the past eight years and are listed on the Buildings at Risk register. Once open, the Halls will include a modern public hall, cafe, 11 offices, a commercial and a community recording studio, a nursery, meeting rooms and courtyard garden. Around 7 years of hard work has been put into developing proposals for the project.
The Board of the Trust, which comprises local people and representatives from partners Maryhill Housing Association, Cube Housing Association and Glasgow City Council, has worked tirelessly to deliver the restoration.
The contractor for the project Graham Construction has secured employment opportunities within the local community by creating three apprenticeships in joinery to work on the Halls restoration. Funding for the Maryhill Burgh Halls project has come from:
European Regional Development Funding £1.327m
Scottish Government City Growth Fund Phases 1 and 2 £1.26m
Heritage Lottery Fund £1.16m
Big Lottery - Growing Community Assets Fund £980,910
Glasgow City Council Better Glasgow Fund £1.02m
Glasgow City Council Vacant and Derelict Land Fund £675,000
Scottish Government Town Centre Regeneration Fund £1.8m
Historic Scotland £593,000
Scottish Government Wider Role Fund £764,000
The Robertson Trust £28,000
Everyone who is interested in following the development of the project through to completion can view progress and comment on the project on the Trust's Website at www.maryhillburghhalls.org.uk