St Michael's, Park Road - Abingdon
Built the Chapel of Ease of St Helen’s Church at a cost of £2500 in decorated style between 1864-7.
It had 650 seats and comprised chancel, nave, south porch and bellcote on the west gable.
St Andrew's - Bradfield
Between his trips abroad in 1847, Scott was contacted by his friend, Thomas Stevens, who had left Staffordshire in 1842, where he had been an Assistant Poor
Law Commissioner and the Curate of Keele. He had returned home to Bradfield in Berkshire, to the west of Reading, where his father, Henry Stevens, had been
the squire and Rector. In 1843, he was himself appointed Rector of Bradfield. Soon afterwards, Stevens and Scott met at Bradfield ‘to consult together as
to the restoration of the church’, but ‘happily’, according to Scott, nothing happened for about ten years. Work started in about 1848, which in spite of
his Aylesbury lecture, seems to have been a ‘Destructive’ restoration, leaving little of the old church standing other than its sixteenth century brick and
flint tower, and the north aisle. Stevens was an architectural enthusiast and was, so Scott said:
a man of very strong views & will a detester of everything weak mean, or unmanly.
He as a natural consequence of this disposition he took a very determined liking to the transitional or what we usually called the ‘Square Abacus’ style.
I participated strongly in this preference as a matter of taste though as a matter of theory I held with the general use of the early decorated as the point
of highest perfection in the style generally.
So very soon after having produced clear public statements on the particular type of Gothic architecture that he considered to the best for new churches in his
Hamburg report, and in his Aylesbury lectures on the most suitable method of restoration, Stevens was able to make him retreat from both of these stated aims.
This would not be the last time that Scott had to withdraw a widely proclaimed view in the face of determined opposition, but Stevens’s friendliness towards
him allowed him to accept defeat with equanimity. ‘Many were the friendly & jocose disputations’ that he and Stevens had on the question of what was the most
perfect period of Gothic.
Scott’s work on Bradfield Church ‘was a time of great pleasure owing to my constant & most friendly communication with Mr. Stevens’. Externally Bradfield Church
ended up as an informal composition entirely appropriate for the picturesque village and later Scott said he thought that it was ‘one of my best works’.
St Andrew's College - Bradfield
In 1850 Stevens decided to found a boys school, which he called St. Andrews College, on the site of Bradfield Place, close to the church. He incorporated some
fragments from the old buildings into his new school buildings, including part of a very large barn. Scott says:
To the buildings of the College I do not claim to be the Architect it was not built but grew of itself bit by bit as it was wanted each part being planned by
Mr. Stevens helped a little by me or by my clerk Coad. The Hall is the part I may chiefly claim as my own.
This hall was built in 1856, with late thirteenth century details externally but its great glory is in its stained glass, of which the west window is a very early
work of Sir Edward Burne-Jones.
Scott’s assistant, Richard Coad (1825-1900), came from Liskeard in Cornwall, and entered Scott and Moffatt's office in 1843, staying until 1864. John Oldrid,
Scott’s second son, who had been a pupil at Bradfield, took over Coad's role at the school after Coad had left his father's office. John built the Big School
in the late 1860's, which must have been one of his earliest works, although presumably very much under the eye of Stevens, who was not only his old headmaster,
but in 1868, became his father-in-law when he married Stevens' daughter, Mary Anne. Scott also sent his third son, Albert Henry, to Bradfield, because he
thought that the school ‘had a wonderful run of success owing to Mr Stevens admirable & courageous management of it’. In fact, Stevens' finances became very
precarious and in 1881, three years after Scott's death, he went bankrupt. The school, however, was reorganised and two years later, John was made a governor.
By 1890 its finances had recovered sufficiently to embark on building a new chapel to John's design. But the Scott - Stevens link did not stop with John.
John also sent his own son, Charles Marriot Oldrid Scott (1880-1952) to Bradfield, who after he succeeded to his father's practice in 1913, carried out further
work there until as recently as 1927. Indeed, the Stevens connection provided the Scott family with almost continuous architectural works for nearly ninety
St Mark's - Englefield
Carried out a ‘destructive’ restoration of this church in 1857 at the sole expense of ‘Mr Benyon’, rebuilding the chancel and providing a new tower with broach spire.
St John the Baptist - Moulsford
Between 1846-7 built a flint and stone church for the Rev, G. K. Morrell (1814/5-81), the first perpetual curate from 1846-76. It was built on the site of a
Norman chapel and retained the old west wall and kept the other walls to the existing layout. The west turret built out of wood has a small broach spire.
St Peter and St Andrew - Old Windsor
Restored this church between 1863-4 for Rev. James St John Blunt, chaplain to Queen Victoria, at a total cost of £2710. The roofs and fittings were of oak, ‘of simple character’
and he added a shingled spire and timber porch. The fittings, estimated cost £400, included altar rails, chancel seats, the pulpit and font, the screen designed
by George Gilbert Scott II circa 1871 at a cost of £55.
Workhouse - Old Windsor
The workhouse was designed and built with Moffat in May 1839. It could house 246 inmates and was built in Elizabethan style on an H plan with stone dressings.
Abbey Gateway - Reading
After its partial collapse following a storm in 1861, Scott carried out a ‘drastic’ restoration in 1869.
Reading Gaol - Reading
In 1842, Scott and Moffatt entered a competition for Reading Gaol, and Mr Russell, Inspector of Prisons, chose their design. Presumably Moffatt did the planning,
although the government laid down strict requirements and the only scope for originality was in the elevational treatment. Pentonville, the model prison, was
in a classical style, but Scott chose a late Perpendicular castle style for Reading, like Herstmonceux Castle, in red brick with stone dressings. The entrance
area was highly ornamented with Tudor mullion windows, castellated turrets and battered walls of diapered brickwork. It was described as ‘resembling more a ducal
seat than a penitentiary’, with the style both ‘castellated and collegiate’. The building was hugely expensive for those days, costing a total of £32,959, of
which Scott and Moffatt, and the Clerk of Works, received £1,460 between them, for fees. Russell blamed the architects for this run-away expenditure, to which
Scott wryly commented that it ‘perhaps served us right for being so easily gulled. I doubt, however whether it was more costly than other prisons & it is
unquestionably a first rate building’. Nevertheless, the general feeling that the high cost of prisons was often attributable to the unnecessary decoration
included by architects in their schemes, seems to have had some justification.
White Knight's Park Villas - Reading
In 1844 Scott and Moffat entered a competition, winning first prize, for their designs for detached villas.
St Mary Magdalene - Shippon
Built this church in 1855 with a chancel, nave, north porch and west turret with a crocketed spire.
St Mary's - Shinfield
Restored the church between 1855-7, although he kept the brick tower. Scott replaced the brick arcade of the south aisle with a Decorated arcade with columns and
turned the apse into a ‘proper chancel’.
Wellington College Chapel - Wellington
July 1861 was a busy month for Scott. Apart from the great debate in the House of Commons, only eight days after Palmerston had laid the foundation stone of the Vaughan Library, he was at another public school to see Prince Albert lay the foundation stone for the chapel that he had designed for Wellington College. The school had been founded as a memorial to the Duke of Wellington who died in 1852, and its buildings, designed by John Shaw (1803-70), were erected between 1856 and 1859 in a sort of elaborate Frenchified Wren style. He drew up a great symmetrical layout plan for the school which included a chapel orientated towards the south.
Scott probably knew Shaw through the Institute, and although he would have tolerated a southern orientation, as he had to at Dundee, he would have hated Shaw's decadent Renaissance style. The headmaster of the new school, Edward Benson White (1829-1896), another clergyman headmaster and later archbishop of Canterbury, found Scott's ideas for religious buildings more congenial, and in 1860, on Shaw’s suggestion, Scott was appointed to design the chapel for the new school. However his building is tucked away to one side at the rear, where it does not impinge upon Shaw's grand layout.
Scott met Prince Albert on 12 July 1861, when, between bouts of illness, he laid the foundation stone of Scott’s chapel at Wellington College. The Prince’s increasingly poor health did not prevent him from being dragged into an argument between the Headmaster and the Governors over the size of the school chapel.
On 4 November 1861 the Prince inspected the work in progress and agreed to support the Head’s contention that the chapel was too small even though Myer’s was well advanced with the construction. It is typical of Scott’s nature that although he would go to any lengths to resist the ideas of the bullying Palmerston, when it came to the gentle Prince, he immediately bowed to his ideas, however inconvenient and ill-considered, and amended his drawings. But the alterations had not been agreed by the Governors and it was probably at their meeting at the House of Lords on 11 November that Scott last saw the Prince. A heated argument had developed over what form the extension should take when the ailing Prince quietly suggested a compromise. This was to add just one bay to the chapel, to which proposal all the Governors were in immediate agreement, and the building was built with an additional bay to that shown on Scott’s drawings. Prince Albert’s death on 14 December 1861 shocked the nation and devastated the Queen.
Prince Albert wanted a smaller version of Eton College chapel but what he got, had he lived to see it, was a lavish version of one of Scott's village churches with an apsidal east end and a rose window at the west end and details in Scott's High Victorian style. On 26 August 1861, George Myers, who was completing Pennethorne's Army Staff College at nearby Camberley at the time, signed the contract to build the new chapel. The stone carving was by Brindley and Farmer based on local leaves and flowers, the woodwork by Ruddle, the glass by Hardman except for the west window by Lusson. The chapel was consecrated on 16 July 1863 having cost about £9000 to complete.
Cloisters and New Chapter Room, Windsor Castle - Windsor
In 1852, Scott built over the west side of the cloisters on the site of the Old Chapter Library, retaining the south wall. He enlarged the buttresses and cloisters
and added three pairs of square leaded windows.
St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle - Windsor
In 1859 Scott had further contact with the Prince Albert over the design of a memorial to the Duchess of Gloucester in St. George’s Chapel, Windsor.
The Duchess of Gloucester was the last survivor of George III’s fifteen children and died in 1857. She was buried in her family vault below the chapel but the Queen
then decided to erect a cenotaph in the south choir aisle to commemorate ‘her beloved aunt’ and commissioned Scott to carry out the work in 1859. It is a
tomb-chest of different coloured marbles, with an inlaid brass cross on the top, but it also has four white marble sculptured panels above and behind the tomb.
These are said to have been designed by the Queen and carried out by William Theed. Theed had carried out a considerable amount of work for the Royal Family
and when the monument was completed, in October 1860, he was granted permission by Prince Albert to inscribe the names of Scott and himself on the memorial.
The Queen’s devastation at Albert’s untimely death on 14 December 1861 did not prevent her from taking a number of decisions almost as soon as he had taken his last
breath which would influence the whole pattern of memorials to ‘that Great and Good Prince’, as Scott calls him. The Queen’s predecessors, except William IV,
are buried at St. George’s Chapel, Windsor, but as Victoria was always anxious to disassociate herself from her somewhat disreputable Hanoverian ancestors, she
and Albert had decided to follow a tendency of his family, the Saxe-Coburgs, and build a mausoleum.
The Prince’s coffin lay in St. George’s Chapel for nearly one year and on 27 December 1862 it was moved to a new mausoleum in the grounds of Frogmore House in Windsor
Home Park. The Dean of Windsor, Gerald Valerian Wellesley, had been upset that the Queen and Prince Albert had turned away from St. George’s, the traditional
burial place, and had proposed that the Prince should be laid to rest in a separate building to the east of the chapel, then known as the Wolsey Chapel.
The Queen objected to Wellesley’s proposal: it was not what she and Albert had planned. But the Dean and Canons nevertheless still wanted to provide a memorial
to the Prince inside the chapel.
One of the Canons, Charles Leslie Courtenay, declared that the east window was an ‘eye-sore in England’s most beautiful Gothic chapel’ and proposed that the whole of
the east end including the altar in front of which the Prince’s coffin was temporarily resting, should be re-designed to incorporate a new window as the chapel’s
memorial to the Prince. Early in 1862, Scott was commissioned to carry out the work and drawings of the windows and reredos were exhibited at the Royal Academy
in 1862. There was considerable pressure to proceed as quickly as possible as the Queen was anxious that her eldest son, the Prince of Wales, later King Edward VII,
should marry soon. He and Princess Alexandra of Denmark were married in St. George’s Chapel on 10 March 1863. This took place in front of Scott’s new window
and a new reredos carved by Philip who employed between sixty and seventy men to get the work finished on time at a cost of £1500. Scott had intended that the
alabaster rererdos should have ornate canopy work and sculptured figures across the entire width of the choir, but at the time of the wedding only the central
portion had been completed. In fact the whole restoration took seven years to complete. All the canopy work was carried out, but in 1869 Courtenay decided that
the intended white marble ‘sculptures’ beside the reredos ‘will be a blot’, so Scott promptly substituted four small square panels in their place.
With the reconstruction the large east window, Scott again showed his knowledge and skill in handling the Perpendicular style. He reinstated twenty angels missing
from the surrounding arch and designed the tracery so that it had fifty-two rectangular lights where figures in stained glass appropriate to the character of
Prince Albert could be displayed. Courtenay seems to have been largely responsible for the iconographic programme of the window which includes, at its base,
fourteen incidents in the life of the Prince. It was made by Clayton and Bell at a cost of £1500.
In 1874 Queen Victoria decided to place a memorial to her father, the Duke of Kent, who had been dead for fifty-four years in the south aisle of St. George’s Chapel. The Duke is buried beneath the chapel and the Queen commissioned Scott to design a table tomb surmounted by a figure of the Duke, which was carried out in alabaster by Sir Edwin Boehm. The monument was originally placed in front of the south-west corner chapel of St. George’s, but a few years later it was moved, and in 1953 it was placed in its present position in the Royal Mausoleum at Frogmore. The Duke of Kent’s cenotaph was Scott’s last work for the Royal Family at Windsor but before the Albert Memorial Chapel was finished, he had carried out further work for the Dean and Canons at the west end of St. George’s. In 1869 he embarked on a restoration of the west front, which included new aisle windows and the provision of a grand new flight of steps up to the west door at a cost of £469. But surrounding this stately composition was a shabby semi-circle of old plaster-covered buildings known as the Horseshoe Cloister which, in 1867, the Dean and Canons had intended to demolish and replace with a new building designed by Salvin. On Scott’s ‘insistence some of the plaster was removed from the walls and it was discovered that the buildings were half timber with herringbone brickwork’. Scott drew up a scheme to restore the cloister which was approved in February 1870, with a cost of £9000, including a new parapet for £416, and Salvin had lost yet another commission to Scott. The work was completed in 1874, one year before the Albert Memorial Chapel and two years before Scott’s more famous Albert Memorial, in Kensington Gardens, was finally unveiled.
Albert Memorial Chapel, Windsor Castle - Windsor
Queen Victoria’s eldest daughter, Victoria the Crown Princess of Prussia and the future Empress of Germany, often helped her mother with artistic matters. Perhaps thinking about Wellesley’s rejected proposal, early in February 1862 suggested to her mother that the Wolsey Chapel, immediately to the east of St. George’s Chapel, could provide the public with a place of pilgrimage in memory of her father. The Queen was enthusiastic about this idea and immediately ordered Scott to carry out the work. Scott was ‘much struck and delighted’ by the Crown Princess’s idea of converting the empty shell of the Wolsey Chapel into a public memorial for Prince Albert. It must have seemed an excellent opportunity to exercise those skills of restoration and refurbishment which over so many years he
had practised so that he now had considerable confidence in his ability to produce a beautiful result. Only this time, the work was for the most prestigious of clients. However, he warned the Queen that the work would be very expensive and she approached Parliament for a grant of £15,000 spread over two years. The Government then raised problems so in May 1862 she decide to pay for the work herself. Scott must have been relieved that he was now dealing directly with the Royal Family and free from the interference of politicians.
Scott formed a new doorway in the west wall of the chapel, removed the south porch and proceeded to remove the existing plaster vaulting with the intention of replacing
it in stone. But on doing this the roof structure was found to be so rotten that it had to be secured by a system of metal shoes and iron ties which, with the
increased load of the stone vaulting, meant that the whole of the old structure had to be strengthened. This was the first of many unforeseen delays and
additional costs which beset this project but the worst aspect of the work for Scott must have been that it involved him in a series of minor disagreements with
the Royal Family.
Scott had intended that the spaces between the new vaulting ribs in the chapel should be painted with angels and heraldic devices but the Crown Princess suggested that
a process of making marble pictures, developed by the French sculptor Baron Henri de Triqueti, could be used instead. This was on show at the International
exhibition at South Kensington, which the Duke of Cambridge had opened on 1 May 1862, with the Crown Princess and her husband in attendance. In the past Prince
Albert had admired Triqueti’s sculpture and was interested in this process of making pictures involving the use of different coloured marble slabs to form the
main areas of colour with their edges and the detail delineated in mastic. However Scott said that flat marble slabs would not be suitable for the curved
surfaces of the vaulting and suggested that mosaic by Salviati, whose work was also on show at the exhibition, should be used instead.
Scott was clearly anxious to make the chapel as splendid as possible and wrote to Wellesley on 12 September 1862 saying that although mosaic would cost twice as much
as the painting that he had originally proposed, he now felt that it was justified because of ‘the magnificent effect it would give to the Chapel’. As was to
happen with the Albert Memorial, the designs were made by Clayton and Bell and then sent to Salviati who made the mosaics in his workshop in Venice. They were
installed by June 1864 with Clayton and Bell painting and gilding the ribs between the panels and making the stained glass windows.
When it came to the walls of the chapel, Scott wrote in his Recollections in July 1872 that:
It was my intention that the walls below the windows should be covered with frescoes … but this was changed at the suggestion of H R H The Princess of Prussia to
subjects in marble inlay by Baron Triqueti.
This work has been a source of deep disappointment to me as it will I fear be to all lovers of art. The Barons work is not in my opinion worthy of his fame or of the
object and I have had to suffer through him & his friends a good deal of vexation, more perhaps through the injudicious ardour of his friends than from any
intention of his own. I have no doubt that my traducers will when the time comes be delighted with this opportunity of vilifying me for matters wholly beyond my
Triqueti submitted his proposal in May 1864. This consisted of eleven large and four smaller marble pictures separated by sculptured panels and he estimated that the
work would take seven to eight years to complete. The work was actually carried out by a former pupil, Jules Destreez, while his favourite ex-pupil, Susan Durant,
carved portrait medallions of members of the Royal Family to go above each of the marble pictures. Triqueti upset Scott by disregarding his drawings for the
mosaic frames to the pictures and substituting his own foliage designs which were ‘by no means to my taste’. When he also ignored Scott’s designs for the marble
benches below the pictures, Scott complained that Triqueti’s ‘knowledge of Gothic architecture is very limited’ and he should not be allowed to interfere with his
design for the reredos. Thanks to the intervention of Wellesley, he was able to retain his design for the surround to the reredos although the reredos itself
was carved by Triqueti. Scott felt that his artistic control of the work was slipping away.
This was not at all what Scott had anticipated when he eagerly responded to the Queen’s command to restore the Wolsey Chapel. But by 1868 the news of his increasing
complaints against Triqueti must have reached the Queen. Susan Durant wrote to a friend that:
I must keep for your private ear what H.M. said of Mr. Scott, & how she trusted the direction of Mr. de Triqueti’s part of the work would not be interfered in
… by H.M.’s special command, Mr. de T. is to meet Scott at the Deanery where he will be communicated the royal wish that the architect will adapt himself to the
requirements of the artists!
The last thing that Scott wanted was to incur the displeasure of the Queen but he was faced with some formidable allegiances and friendships. Susan Durant was a
friend of the Royal Family, particularly the Crown Princess, and in September 1865 she went to Berlin to model the Princess’s medallion for the chapel. While
there she gave the Princess lessons in modelling and they even considered setting up a joint studio. It is not surprising that when the Queen went to the
chapel with Durant in inspect Triqueti’s marble pictures she became enthusiastic about their beauty.
The centrepiece of the restored chapel was to be a cenotaph to Prince Albert. Scott had been instructed that this would be in the form of a medieval tomb chest
surmounted by a recumbent figure of the Prince in the robes of the Order of the Garter. Around the pedestal would be small niches containing figures representing
members of the Prince’s family. However in December 1865 the sculpture was entrusted to Triqueti and the design was altered to such an extent that it now
bears little resemblance to Scott’s usual dignified memorials. The Crown Princess told Triqueti that her peace-loving father should be clad in medieval armour
and the original robes of the Order of the Garter and he suggested that in place of the members of the family there should be angels on the four corners lifting
the Prince heavenwards. This was clearly not an acceptable idea but a compromise was found with the angels still on the corners, but with allegorical figures
in the niches on the sides, while at the head is an exquisite statuette of the Queen in prayer. Although Triqueti’s carving is of a very high standard, the
monument is spoilt by over-ornateness and the close juxtaposition of different scale figures.
Work on the monument was interrupted by the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 when Triqueti found his client, the Crown Princess, on the opposite side to him and his
French and German assistants left his studio to fight each other in their respective armies. Work was resumed in 1871 and Triqueti was working on a pair of
angels intended for the sides of the west door when he died in May 1874. The chapel was finally opened to visitors on 1 December 1875 when it was renamed the
Albert Memorial Chapel. The Morning Post
, on the following day, described the chapel as a ‘veritable treasure-house of gilding, marble, mosaics, precious stones,
and coloured glass’, but Scott was disappointed. Triqueti’s large and hard pictures completely detracted from the solemn and dignified atmosphere which he had
tried to evoke. Today the effect of the chapel has entirely changed from what either Scott or Triqueti had intended as Queen Victoria allowed two great tombs to
fill the spaces alongside Albert’s memorial. These were to commemorate her youngest son, the Duke of Albany, who died in 1884 and her grandson, the Duke of
Clarence, who died in 1892. His tomb is a huge affair which completely overpowers Albert’s more modest structure.