Basic Biographical Details

Name: Gilbert McGarva
Designation: Architect
Born: 1877
Died: 10 August 1939
Bio Notes: Gilbert McGarva was born in 1877 and articled to Allan Stevenson of Ayr on 26 November 1894, attending local authority classes in the same town under the South Kensington regime. After completing his four-year apprenticeship he remained with Stevenson for a further eighteen months as assistant, leaving in July 1900 to join the office of Frank Burnet & Boston (soon to become Burnet, Boston & Carruthers) in Glasgow. This enabled him to study at Glasgow School of Art under Alexander McGibbon and Eugène Bourdon. He remained with the same firm for just over seven years, latterly as principal assistant, before emigrating to China on obtaining an appointment with Atkinson & Dallas in Shanghai. He was admitted LRIBA on 20 March 1911, his proposers being John Brooke of Manchester, Leonard William Crandall Lorden of Hythe, Kent, and William Macdonnell Mitchell Dowdall of Shanghai. The two first of these had no obvious connection with McGarva, and it is not clear how he came to know them; the connection may have been through Atkinson & Dallas, neither of whom were members of the Institute. By that time McGarva had been given full charge of the Atkinson & Dallas office.

McGarva died on 10 August 1939.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architect:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 11, Yuen Ming Yuen Road, Shanghai, ChinaPrivate1911 *  

* earliest date known from documented sources.

Employment and Training


The following individuals or organisations employed or trained this architect (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 6Allan Stevenson26 November 1894November 1898Apprentice 
Item 2 of 6Allan StevensonNovember 1898July 1900Assistant 
Item 3 of 6Frank Burnet & BostonJuly 19001901Assistant 
Item 4 of 6Burnet, Boston & Carruthers1901c. 31 October 1907Assistant 
Item 5 of 6Atkinson & DallasNovember 1907Before 1911Assistant 
Item 6 of 6Atkinson & Dallas1911 * Chief Assistant 

* earliest date known from documented sources.


RIBA Proposers

The following individuals proposed this architect for RIBA membership (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate proposedNotes
Item 1 of 3John Brooke20 March 1911for Licentiateship
Item 2 of 3William Macdonnell Mitchell Dowdall20 March 1911for Licentiateship
Item 3 of 3Leonard William Crandall Lorden20 March 1911for Licentiateship

Buildings and Designs

This architect was involved with the following buildings or structures from the date specified (click on an item to view details):
 Date startedBuilding nameTown, district or villageIslandCity or countyCountryNotes
Item 1 of 26 Banque de l'Indo Chine  PekingChinaDate unknown
Item 2 of 26 Moukden Post Office  MoukdenChinaDate unknown
Item 3 of 26 Peking Palace of Varieties  PekingChinaDate unknown
Item 4 of 26 Peking Salvation Army Buildings  PekingChinaDate unknown
Item 5 of 26 Peking Union Church  PekingChinaDate unknown
Item 6 of 26 Salt Industrial bank  PekingChinaDate unknown
Item 7 of 261894Hourstons Drapery WarehouseAyr AyrshireScotlandOriginal building - as apprentice to Allan Stevenson
Item 8 of 261897Ayrshire Lunatic AsylumAyr AyrshireScotlandExtensions - as apprentice to Allan Stevenson
Item 9 of 261900Robertson Memorial ChurchAyr/Wallacetown AyrshireScotlandas assistant to Allan Stevenson
Item 10 of 261900Royal Bank of Scotland branch office and business premises  GlasgowScotlandAs assistant to Burnet & Boston
Item 11 of 261900St George's Mansions  GlasgowScotlandas assistant to Burnet & Boston
Item 12 of 261900Tenements for Glasgow City Improvement Trust, High Street  GlasgowScotlandAs assistant to Burnet & Boston
Item 13 of 26After 1900RedholmePollokshields/Dumbreck GlasgowScotlandas assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers- Addition?
Item 14 of 26After 1900Wesleyan Methodist ChurchBarrhead RenfrewshireScotlandas assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers
Item 15 of 261902Herriot Hill Printing Works  GlasgowScotlandAdditions on St James Road (£3,500) - as assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers
Item 16 of 261903City Improvement Trust Buildings, High Street and Bell Street  GlasgowScotlandProbably involved in extensive alterations and addition of mansard attic, as assistant to Burnet Boston & Carruthers
Item 17 of 261903Gordon Chambers  GlasgowScotlandAs assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers
Item 18 of 261903Herriot Hill Printing Works  GlasgowScotlandFurther additions (£15,000) - as assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers
Item 19 of 261903Tenements, High Street and Duke Street  GlasgowScotlandAs assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers, who won competition to secure job
Item 20 of 261903Workshops, High Street  GlasgowScotlandProbably involved, as assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers
Item 21 of 26190439 Sherbrooke AvenuePollokshields GlasgowScotlandas assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers
Item 22 of 261904Matheran HousePollokshields GlasgowScotlandas assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers
Item 23 of 261904McLellan Art Gallery and warehouse  GlasgowScotlandRemodelling of interior, shopfronts, and dome at Rose Street corner - as assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers
Item 24 of 261905Drill Hall and Headquarters for the Royal Naval Reserve BrigadeGovan GlasgowScotlandAs assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers
Item 25 of 261905Workshops, High Street  GlasgowScotlandProbably involved in further work after fire, as assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers
Item 26 of 261906Canning Place Public School  GlasgowScotlandAs assistant to Burnet, Boston & Carruthers


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this architect:
Item 1 of 1British Architectural Library, RIBA2001Directory of British Architects 1834-1914   

Periodical References

The following periodicals contain references to this architect:
 Periodical NameDateEditionPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 1RIBA JournalSeptember 1954 London: Royal Institute of British ArchitectsObituary

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this architect:
 SourceArchive NameSource Catalogue No.Notes
Item 1 of 1RIBA Archive, Victoria & Albert MuseumRIBA Nomination Papers L v14 no996