January Light: cupolas

The cupola above adorns Holmwood House in Glasgow’s South Side. Now in the care of the National Trust for Scotland, Holmwood is a unique villa designed by Glasgow’s second most famous architect, Alexander ‘Greek’ Thomson, and built in 1857-8 for James Couper, a local businessman. Its skylight is perfect for Becky’s January Squares Challenge – words ending in light.

I originally intended to use the cupola from Glasgow’s Gallery of Modern Art, this part of which was built in 1778 as the townhouse of William Cunninghame, a wealthy Glasgow Tobacco Lord who made his fortune through the triangular slave trade. However, I showed it to Becky on her recent visit and she got in first by including it in the challenge herself! But what the heck – here it is as a bonus skylight.

Holmwood

Holmwood House
Holmwood

Holmwood, now in the care of the National Trust for Scotland, is a unique villa designed by Glasgow’s second most famous architect, Alexander ‘Greek’ Thomson. It was built in 1857-8 for James Couper, a local businessman. Thomson’s original room decoration, based on themes from the classical world, is being uncovered and we’ve followed the progress of this continuing conservation work over the years.

Here, a piece of original wall paper has been uncovered in the dining room, and the barometer sits atop the fire-place in the hall:

A selection from the classical frieze:

Beautiful floor tiling:

Ceilings and dome:

When we first visited, it was empty, and although still not fully furnished, it now looks more like a home.

There are also attractive riverside grounds to explore and a small kitchen garden, planted with a range of Victorian herbs, fruit and vegetables. Unfortunately, while we were in the house the heavens opened so we didn’t spend long outside.

All the more time to spend taking tea in the small café!