Basic Biographical Details

Name: James William Laing
Designation: Architect
Born: 26 April 1908
Died: 20 January 1978
Bio Notes: James William Laing was born on 26 April 1908 and was articled to Thomas Bowhill Gibson in January 1924. During this period he attended classes at Edinburgh College of Art and Heriot-Watt College under John Begg. On completion of his apprenticeship in January 1929 he remained with Gibson as assistant, and he was still in the same post when he was admitted ARIBA on 4 December 1933, his proposers being Begg, John Jerdan and Thomas Forbes Maclennan. He was also an Associate of the Edinburgh Architectural Association.

By 1939 Gibson, who specialised in cinema and theatre design but also carried out some domestic work, had taken Laing into partnership as Bowhill Gibson & Laing. Laing continued the practice under the existing name at their offices at 36 Palmerston Place after Gibson's death on 27 September 1949.

Laing died suddenly on 20 January 1978, his death being reported to the RIBA by his widow Martha M Laing. They had been living at 10 Templeland Road, Edinburgh.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architect:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 59, Murieston Crescent, Edinburgh, ScotlandPrivate1933 *  
Item 2 of 519, Manor Place, Edinburgh, ScotlandBusinessc. 1938c. 1940 
Item 3 of 536, Palmerston Place, Edinburgh, ScotlandBusiness1949 *After 1950 
Item 4 of 56, Manor Place, Edinburgh, ScotlandBusinessc. 1960 *  
Item 5 of 510, Templeland Road, Edinburgh, ScotlandPrivateBefore 19781978 

* 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 4Thomas Bowhill GibsonJanuary 1924January 1929Apprentice 
Item 2 of 4Thomas Bowhill GibsonJanuary 1929After 1933Assistant 
Item 3 of 4T Bowhill Gibson & LaingMid 1930sAfter 1949Partner 
Item 4 of 4Gibson, Laing & PartnersBefore 1970 Partner 


RIBA Proposers

The following individuals proposed this architect for RIBA membership (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate proposedNotes
Item 1 of 3John Begg4 December 1933for Associateship
Item 2 of 3John Jerdan4 December 1933for Associateship
Item 3 of 3Thomas Forbes Maclennan4 December 1933for Associateship

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 191939CinemaBaillieston GlasgowScotland 
Item 2 of 191948Church Halls East Camus Place   EdinburghScotland 
Item 3 of 191948Theatre Royal  EdinburghScotlandRebuilding after fire
Item 4 of 19c. 1955126 Princes Street  EdinburghScotlandShopfront and internal alterations
Item 5 of 191958Bryan's SchoolEasthouses, Dalkeith MidlothianScotland 
Item 6 of 191958Police StationBathgate West LothianScotland 
Item 7 of 191959Dalkeith Colliery, BathsDalkeith MidlothianScotland 
Item 8 of 191962Farm buildings including Oatridge  West LothianScotland 
Item 9 of 191962Transport Depot  EdinburghScotland 
Item 10 of 191963The Merlin licensed premisesMorningside EdinburghScotland 
Item 11 of 191964Glencorse BarracksPenicuik MidlothianScotlandAlterations? additions?
Item 12 of 191965Diagnostic Centre  EdinburghScotland 
Item 13 of 191965Shopping developmentWishaw LanarkshireScotland 
Item 14 of 191967Moray House Training College  EdinburghScotlandAlterations
Item 15 of 191968CraigiehallCramond EdinburghScotlandAlterations to command headquarters (main house) and housing in grounds.
Item 16 of 191968Paper MillPowderhall EdinburghScotland 
Item 17 of 191968Royal Naval EstablishmentRosyth FifeScotlandOffices
Item 18 of 191968Transport officesShrubhill EdinburghScotland 
Item 19 of 191969Factory for Glasgow ButchersCambuslang LanarkshireScotland 


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this architect:
Item 1 of 3Post Office Directories     
Item 2 of 3RIBA1939The RIBA Kalendar 1939-1940 London: Royal Institute of British Architects 
Item 3 of 3RIBA1950The RIBA Kalendar 1950-1951 London: Royal Institute of British Architects 

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 A no5238 (combined box 65) (includes letter from his wife, Martha M Laing, notifying of his death on 20 January 1978)