Listed Building

The only legal part of the listing under the Planning (Listing Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997 is the address/name of site. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing – see 'About Listed Buildings' below for more information. The further details below the 'Address/Name of Site' are provided for information purposes only.

Address/Name of Site


Status: Designated


There are no additional online documents for this record.


Date Added
Supplementary Information Updated
Local Authority
Planning Authority
NS 60081 65840
260081, 665840


Charles Rennie Mackintosh (of John Honeyman and Keppie), 1895-1898. Compact plan, three-storey and basement school in red Ballochmyle freestone, squared and snecked with ashlar dressings. Some bracketted cill and lintel courses often in stylised form linking closely grouped windows, and to single windows; eaves elevation cornice in a variety of forms.

North Elevation: seven-bay, symmetrical block, with flanking bays set back and gabled. Centre bay with blocked basement doorway and bipartite above; outer three bays each side with windows to each bay, quasi-balcony across first floor groups, second floor groups linked at cill and cornice levels, latter raised at centre in keystoned shaped pediments. Two-bay simple return elevations. Entrances in recessed gables, mirrored pair, each door set in advanced panel with keystone and ogee carving to lintel above and distinctive flanking ornament; double doors with tear drop panels; bracketted string course above with quasi-balcony and two narrow windows lighting stairwell, and small window at third floor with bracketted cill.

South Elevation: Nine-bay with grouped windows, advanced square stack, with bracketted overhanging coping, towards east. Doorway in centre bay of centre group with bracketted porch and square fanlight above. Plain fenestration with some linking cill or lintel details.

East and West elevations: similarly detailed with stairwell defined by two narrow windows and mullioned and transomed broad round arched windows above, under deeply swept eaves; narrow stair windows to right and left respectively. Subtle variety of windows to rest of elevation. Small-pane upper sashes and two-pane lowers to sash and case windows; square lead-pane glazing in stairwell windows. Grey slates; coped stacks. Two ogee ventilators with decorative knot and finial, leaded bases (formerly with balustrade).

Interior: almost symmetrical with galleried light-well at centre and stairs to east and west. Currently under repair (1988). Walls tiled to wainscot level with green tiles at top. Archways to corridors. Small-pane upper panels to doors. Glasgow Style screens (currently removed 1988, to be returned). Mannered details to roof trusses, and Glasgow Style stair newels.

Retaining walls and gates: ashlar walls enclosing entrance courtyards, with balustrade to east and partial balustrade to west. Two sets of decorative wrought iron gates.

Statement of Special Interest

Commissioned by the School Board of Glasgow the outline of the design follows their requirements, and complies with a restricted site. However, distinctive Mackintosh features are apparent, particularly in the stairwells, ogee ventilators and interior details. The balustrade echoes that in his earlier Queen Margaret College design, Hillhead, 1894 (LB32902). It is an early work by Mackintosh and contrasts with his Scotland Street School composition of 1904 (LB33534). Burnet, Boston and Carruthers 185 St James Road school 1906, gives further instance of the School Board Schools' compact massing.

Martyr's School is of a group of important buildings by John Honeyman and Keppie dating from the mid 1890s that include the Glasgow Herald buildings (LB33087) and Queen's Cross Church (LB33764), in which Mackintosh's distinctive contribution to the work of the firm can first be clearly seen (Mackintosh Architecture).

Charles Rennie Mackintosh (1868-1928) was born in Glasgow and is regarded internationally as one of the leading architects and designers of the 20th century. He became known as a pioneer of Modernism, although his architecture took much inspiration from Scottish Baronial, and Scottish and English vernacular forms and their reinterpretation. The synthesis of modern and traditional forms led to a distinctive form of Scottish arts and crafts design, known as 'The Glasgow Style'. This was developed in collaboration with contemporaries Herbert McNair, and the sisters Francis and Margaret Macdonald (who would become his wife in 1900), who were known as 'The Four'. The Glasgow Style is now synonymous with Mackintosh and the City of Glasgow.

Mackintosh's work is wide-ranging and includes public, educational and religious buildings to private houses, interior decorative schemes and sculptures. He is associated with over 150 design projects, ranging from being the principal designer, to projects he was involved with as part of the firm of John Honeyman & Keppie (Honeyman, Keppie & Mackintosh from 1901). The most important work during this partnership was the Glasgow School of Art (LB33105), which was built in two phases from 1897 and culminated in the outstanding library of 1907.

Other key works include the Willow Tea Rooms (LB33173), the Glasgow Herald Building (now The Lighthouse) (LB33087) and Hill House (LB34761), which display the modern principles of the German concept of 'Gesamtkunstwerk', meaning the 'synthesis of the arts'. This is something that Mackintosh applied completely to all of his work, from the exterior to the internal decorative scheme and the furniture and fittings.

Mackintosh left Glasgow in 1914, setting up practice in London the following year. Later he and Margaret moved to France, where until his death, his artistic output largely turned to textile design and watercolours.

Statutory address changed from 11 Barony Street to 17 Parson Street in 2009 following information from Glasgow City Council.

Listed building record revised in 2019.




Printed Sources

Brown, A (2018) Charles Rennie Mackintosh Making the Glasgow Style. Glasgow: Glasgow Museums.

Crawford, A (1995) Charles Rennie Mackintosh. London: Thomas and Hudson.

Cooper, J. (editor) (1984) Mackintosh architecture: the complete buildings and selected projects. London: Academy.

Gomme and Walker, (1987) p.220, fig.204.

Howarth, T. (1977) Charles Rennie Mackintosh and the Modern Movement. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd.

Neat, T. & McDermott, G. (2002) Closing The Circle Thomas Howarth, Mackintosh and the Modern Movement. Aberdour: Inyx publishing.

Robertson, P. (editor) (1990) Mackintosh: The Architectural Papers. Wendlebury: White Cockade Publishing.

Online Sources

Dictionary of Scottish Architects, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, (accessed 30/05/2019).

University of Glasgow, Mackintosh Architecture, M105 Martyrs Public School, (accessed 03/06/2019).


Information by courtesy of Buildings of Scotland Research Unit.

About Listed Buildings

Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating sites and places at the national level. These designations are Scheduled monuments, Listed buildings, Inventory of gardens and designed landscapes and Inventory of historic battlefields.

We make recommendations to the Scottish Government about historic marine protected areas, and the Scottish Ministers decide whether to designate.

Listing is the process that identifies, designates and provides statutory protection for buildings of special architectural or historic interest as set out in the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997.

We list buildings which are found to be of special architectural or historic interest using the selection guidance published in Designation Policy and Selection Guidance (2019)

Listed building records provide an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building which has been identified by its statutory address. The description and additional information provided are supplementary and have no legal weight.

These records are not definitive historical accounts or a complete description of the building(s). If part of a building is not described it does not mean it is not listed. The format of the listed building record has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

The legal part of the listing is the address/name of site which is known as the statutory address. Other than the name or address of a listed building, further details are provided for information purposes only. Historic Environment Scotland does not accept any liability for any loss or damage suffered as a consequence of inaccuracies in the information provided. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing. Even if a number or name is missing from a listing address it will still be listed. Listing covers both the exterior and the interior and any object or structure fixed to the building. Listing also applies to buildings or structures not physically attached but which are part of the curtilage (or land) of the listed building as long as they were erected before 1 July 1948.

While Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating listed buildings, the planning authority is responsible for determining what is covered by the listing, including what is listed through curtilage. However, for listed buildings designated or for listings amended from 1 October 2015, legal exclusions to the listing may apply.

If part of a building is not listed, it will say that it is excluded in the statutory address and in the statement of special interest in the listed building record. The statement will use the word 'excluding' and quote the relevant section of the 1997 Act. Some earlier listed building records may use the word 'excluding', but if the Act is not quoted, the record has not been revised to reflect subsequent legislation.

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Printed: 25/06/2022 14:57