Sir Robert Rowand Anderson

1834 - 1921

Architect. Born in Edinburgh, the son of a solicitor, Anderson became Scotland's leading architect at the end of the 19th century. He was educated at George Watson's College and initially intended to follow his father into the legal profession, but was soon attending architectual classes at the Trustees' Drawing Academy and went on to train with John Lessels (1809-83). He then worked with George Gilbert Scott (1811-78) in London.

Anderson worked in many styles from 'Scottish Gothic' through to classical, and his public buildings include the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Glasgow Central Railway Station, Pollokshaws Burgh Buildings, the Pearce Institute in Govan, the McEwan Graduation Hall and Medical School for the University of Edinburgh and Mount Stuart for John Crichton-Stuart, the 3rd Marquess of Bute (1847 - 1900). He also worked on the restoration of Broughty Castle, Culross Abbey Church, Dunblane Cathedral, Iona Abbey, Jedburgh Abbey, King's College Chapel in Aberdeen and Paisley Abbey, and extending and remodelling the likes of Bush House (Midlothian), Pollok House (Glasgow) and Yester House (East Lothian). He also designed churches and numerous prominent public monuments. Anderson was knighted in 1902, primarily for his work on Balmoral Castle. He was awarded the Royal Institute of British Architects Gold Medal in 1916.

He maintained homes in Rutland Square and Colinton (Edinburgh). He died at the latter and lies buried in Warriston Cemetery, his grave marked by an ornate stone. Anderson left his Rutland Square property to the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland, which he helped found, and the building remains their offices to this day.

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