Dictionary of Irish Architects 1720 - 1940

Engineer and architect, of Belfast. According to the Irish census of 1901, Robert Graeme Watt was born in Scotland in 1848 or 1849.   He obtained an engineering degree, but other details of his architectural formation are not recorded.(1) His name first appears in the Irish Builder in February 1873, when he read a paper on architectural education to the Belfast Architectural Association.(2) Two years later, in April 1875, he read another paper on Elizabethan architecture.(3) From circa 1875 until circa 1883 he was in a long-distance partnership with JAMES OTWAY  JAMES OTWAY of Waterford, with whom he designed at least two country houses and entered the competition for the Holy Ghost Hospital in Waterford. Otway and Watt exhibited 'architectural drawings' at the Cork Industrial Exhibition of 1883.(4) For the next twelve years or so Watt appears to have practised independently but in November 1895 he formed a new partnership with FREDERICK HENRY TULLOCH  FREDERICK HENRY TULLOCH of Westminster.(5) Tulloch had exhibited several of his competition designs for municipal buildings in England at the Royal Academy, and it was possibly his experience in this field which attracted Watt at a time when the competition for designing a new city hall for Belfast was imminent. When the competition took place the following year, the new partnership, known as Graeme Watt & Tulloch, was placed second in the first stage of the competition but withdrew their design from the final stage.(6)

By 1901 WILLIAM HARTLEY PATTERSON  WILLIAM HARTLEY PATTERSON had joined the practice of Graeme Watt & Tulloch and had apparently become a partner by the time he decided to emigrate to Canada in 1909.(7) His place was taken by NICHOLAS FITZSIMONS NICHOLAS FITZSIMONS , a former pupil of Watt's, in August 1909, after which the practice went under the name of WATT TULLOCH & WATT TULLOCH & amp; FITZSIMONS. FITZSIMONS. (8) Watt's name was dropped in 1915 which presumably indicates that he died or retired at about this time.   In addition to Fitzsimons, his pupils included JOHN PERCY WAKEFORD JOHN PERCY WAKEFORD , FRANCIS EDWARD WARD  FRANCIS EDWARD WARD and the Scottish architect James Richard Fleming.

At the time of the 1901 Irish census, Watt had a wife named Mary, three years his junior, who had been born in Malta.

Belfast Architectural Association: reads paper on architectural education, 2 February 1873;(9) reads paper on Elizabethan architecture, 19 April 1875.(10)
RIAI: elected member 28 November 1878, having been proposed by GEORGE CARLISLE HENDERSON GEORGE CARLISLE HENDERSON , ALBERT EDWARD MURRAY  ALBERT EDWARD MURRAY and JAMES HIGGINS OWEN JAMES HIGGINS OWEN ;(11) elected fellow, 14 December 1889.(12)
Royal Geographical Society: fellow by 1873.(13)

Addresses: Work: 22 Donegall Place, Belfast, 1877;(14) Donegall Place, 1880;(15) 77a Victoria Street, Belfast, 1895->=1908.(16)
Home:  6 Somerton Road, Belfast, 1901.

See WORKS; for works from November 1895 to August 1909, see WATT (GRAEME GRAEME ) & TULLOCH TULLOCH ; for works from September 1909 to 1915, see WATT TULLOCH & WATT TULLOCH & amp; FITZSIMONS. FITZSIMONS.



References



(1) He may possibly have worked in the office of THOMAS JACKSON & SON; an 'R. Watt' witnessed the contract for building the Jackson's Ulster Bank premises in Newtownards at some point between 1869 and 1881 (Ulster Bank archives, UB/N54-58).
(2) IB 15, 15 Feb 1873, 56.
(3) B 33, 24 Apr 1875, 379.
(4) Nos. 691-693, see IALE, II, 540.
(5) B 69, 30 Nov 1895, 404.
(6) IB 38, 1 Dec 1896, 243; Building News 71, 11,18 Dec 1896, 843,897; 73, 23 Jul 1897, 113(illus.).
(7) IB 51, 21 Aug 1909, 533.
(8) See note 6, above.
(9) See note 1, above.
(10) See note 2, above.
(11) RIAI council meeting minutes, 13 Nov 1878, 214.
(12) RIAI council meeting minutes, 2 Dec 1889, 278; annual general meeting minutes, 14 Dec 1889, 292-3.
(13) He is described as 'BE, FRGS' in IB 15, 15 Feb 1873, 56.
(14) Architect 18, 28 Jul 1877, 46.
(15) Marcus Patton, Central Belfast: an historical gazetteer (UAHS, 1993), 106.
(16) This is given as W.H. Patterson's address in RIAI list of members, 1908.


35 work entries listed in chronological order for WATT, ROBERT GRAEME


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Building: CO. ARMAGH, PORTADOWN, CARRICKBLACKER ROAD, HOUSES
Date: 1870ca?
Nature: RW suggests designs for houses on new housing development.
Refs: Suggestions for houses on new building estate, Carrickblacker Road, Portadown, Co. Armagh, in PRONI, D1252/25/18 (see PRONI e-catalogue).

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, MALONE ROAD, NO. 006 & 8 (CNOC ALLUIN)
Date: 1876
Nature: 2-storey stuccoed terrace houses.
Refs: Paul Larmour, The Architectural Heritage of Malone & Stranmillis (UAHS, 1991), 115

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, CASTLE STREET, NO. 040 & 42
Date: 1876
Nature: Conversion into shop for Mssrs. O'Donnell & Grimshaw, Bros. work examined by James Henry, Crumlin Rd, Belfast.
Refs: PRONI D1905/1/5

Building: CO. WATERFORD, CAPPAGH HOUSE (CAPPOQUIN)
Date: 1876-77
Nature: New house, for R.J. Ussher designed by RW with James Otway .Clerk of Works: Arthur Matthews. Design exh Belfast AA, 2 May 1876, and published in |Architect|, 1877.
Refs: IB 18, 15 May 1876, 142; Architect 18, 28 Jul 1877, 46, illus. in supplement.

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, MALONE ROAD, NO. 075 (BENVUE)
Date: 1876a
Nature: Large asymmetrical 2-storey stuccoed villa with 'more than a hint of Gothic Revival styling'. For Robert W. Corry of J.P. Corry & Co., ship owners and timber merchants.. Design exh Belfast AA, 2 May 1876, and published in |Architect|, 1877. Contractor: Henry Stewart & Co., Belfast.
Refs: IB 18, 15 May 1876, 142; Architect 18, 28 Jul 1877, 46 (illus. in supplement); Paul Larmour, The Architectural Heritage of Malone & Stranmillis (UAHS, 1991), 100(illus.),103.

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, DONEGALL PLACE, NO. 007-9 (LINDSAY BROS.)
Date: 1877-79
Nature: Rebuilding of premises destroyed by fire in 1876. 4-storey stucco building, oroignally with central pediment.
Refs: Paul Larmour, Belfast: an illustrated architectural guide (1987), 65 (no. 147 sub Bank Buildings); Marcus Patton, Central Belfast: an historical gazetteer (UAHS, 1993), 103

Building: CO. WATERFORD, SUMMERVILLE (DUNMORE EAST)
Date: 1878
Nature: New house, with James Otway, for Hon. D.F. Fortescue. (Description of property in notice of sale in Irish Times, 18 Jan 1900.)
Refs: Architect 19, 19 Jan,1 Feb 1878, 38(illus.); Mark Bence-Jones, Burke’s Guide to Country Houses. Volume I, Ireland. (London, 1978), 92

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, WELLINGTON PARK, NO. 003-7
Date: 1879
Nature: 2-storey stuccoed Italianate houses with pilastered doorways.
Refs: Paul Larmour, The Architectural Heritage of Malone & Stranmillis (UAHS, 1991), 178

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, WELLINGTON PARK, NO. 038-42
Date: 1879
Nature: 3 2-storey stucco houses with chanelled rustication to ground floors, canted bays &c.
Refs: Paul Larmour, The Architectural Heritage of Malone & Stranmillis (UAHS, 1991), 179-80

Building: CO. WATERFORD, WATERFORD, CORK ROAD, HOSPITAL OF THE HOLY GHOST
Date: 1880
Nature: James Otway & Robert Watt competition entrants.
Refs: IB 22, 15 Jul 1880, 205

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, MALONE ROAD, NO. 055 & 57
Date: 1880-81
Nature: Pair of 3-storey semi-dtached Italianate stuccoed houses, designed 1881 (No. 55) and 1880 (No. 57).
Refs: Paul Larmour, The Architectural Heritage of Malone & Stranmillis (UAHS, 1991), 102

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, ROYAL AVENUE, NO. 053 (BELFAST WATER COMMISSIONERS)
Date: 1883
Nature: 'Mr. Robert Watt' placed second in competition for designing same.
Refs: IB 24, 1 Feb 1882, 45

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, WILLIAM STREET SOUTH, NO. 013-19. (& MONTGOMERY STREET) (WILLIAM A. ROSS & SON)
Date: 1883
Nature: New premises, 100 x 30 ft., in brick and Dumfries stone.
Refs: Building News 45, 6 Jul 1883, 14(illus.) (Marcus Patton, Central Belfast: an historical gazetteer (UAHS, 1993), gives design to William Stirling, 1875ca).

Building: CO. LAOIS, GRANSTON MANOR
Date: 1885
Nature: Works for 2nd Baron Castletown with James Otway. Subject of arbitration, Otway & Watt v. Lord Castletown, 1886. (Arbitrator: Thomas Drew)
Refs: IAA, PKS B13/18, A07 (May 1886-Feb 1887), L9 (pp.530,646,653,660,668,769)

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, WINDSOR PARK, HOUSE
Date: 1885
Nature: New house for James Hetherington.
Refs: PRONI, W.H. Stephens & Sons papers, D1898/1/2-1

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, WARING STREET, NO. 001-3 (COMMERCIAL BUILDINGS)
Date: 1886
Nature: Alts. to interior.
Refs: Paul Larmour, Belfast: an illustrated architectural guide (1987), 5 (no. 6)

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, WINDSOR PARK, NO. 018 & 20
Date: 1887
Nature: Pair of red brick semi-detached houses with Norman Saw-inspired detailing.
Refs: Paul Larmour, The Architectural Heritage of Malone & Stranmillis (UAHS, 1991), 186

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, ORMEAU ROAD, GAS WORKS
Date: 1887-88
Nature: New; 'designed by a leading local architect [RW] and not by the manager of the works [James Stelfox] as is popularly supposed' (Larmour)
Refs: Paul Larmour, Belfast: an illustrated architectural guide (1987), 52-3 (no. 119, illus.)

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, ORMEAU AVENUE, PUBLIC BATHS
Date: 1887-89
Nature: New baths.
Refs: PRONI, W.H. Stephens & Sons papers, D1898/1/2; Paul Larmour, Belfast: an illustrated architectural guide (1987), 53 (no. 120, illus.); Marcus Patton, Central Belfast: an historical gazetteer (UAHS, 1993), 220(illus.),254

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, ARTHUR SQUARE, NO. 001-3 (GRAND RESTAURANT & CAFÉ CO.)
Date: 1888
Nature: New curved 3-storey brick building with attic and Dutch gables on site of old Thistle Hotel. To cost about £8,000.
Refs: PRONI, W.H. Stephens & Sons papers, D1898/1/4; IB 30, 15 Apr 1888, 100; Marcus Patton, Central Belfast: an historical gazetteer (UAHS, 1993), 15(illus.),16

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, NEWTOWNARDS ROAD (& EAST BREAD STREET), BELFAST ROPEWORK CO.
Date: 1888-89
Nature: New sheds, 1888, and offices, 1889
Refs: Architect 40, 14 Sep 1888, suppl p.1; Paul Larmour, Belfast: an illustrated architectural guide (1987), 53 (sub no 119)

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, CORNMARKET, MOONEY'S PUBLIC HOUSE
Date: 1888i
Nature: New?
Refs: PRONI, W.H. Stephens & Sons papers, D1898/1/4

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, WINDSOR PARK, NO. 022-28
Date: 1889
Nature: 4-storey terrace of red brick houses with terracotta finials to dormers and gables. Queen Anne-style wooden porches. Forr James Hetherington.
Refs: Paul Larmour, The Architectural Heritage of Malone & Stranmillis (UAHS, 1991), 186

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, TOMB STREET, NO. 010-16 (J. WILSON & CO.)
Date: 1889
Nature: Bonded warehouse for J. wilson & Co. (later Hugh White & Co.)
Refs: PRONI, W.H. Stephens & Sons papers, D1898/1/5

Building: CO. DOWN, KIRCASSOCK
Date: 1889
Nature: Propsed additions to stables.
Refs: Plans and elevations, 1889, in PRONI, D1031/4 (see PRONI e-catalogue).

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, YORK ROAD, MCLAUGHLIN & HARVEY
Date: 1889a
Nature: New builder's yard just completed for McLaughlin & Harvey, 'generally admitted…one of the best constructed and most ingeniously arranged years of the kind in Ireland'. Includes 2-storey office, workshops, carpenters' yard, stonecutters' shed, engine housed in 'very artistic little edifice, neatly decorated and gay with stained glass'. &c.
Refs: IB 32, 1 Jan 1890, 11

Building: CO. DOWN, DONAGHCLONEY (WARINGSTOWN), HOUSE (BANOGUE HOUSE?)
Date: 1890
Nature: New house for William Liddell.
Refs: PRONI, W.H. Stephens & Sons papers, D1898/1/60

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, TEMPLEMORE AVENUE, PUBLIC BATHS
Date: 1891
Nature: New. Tender of W.J. Campbell & Sons of £8,300 accepted, also that of Riddel & Co. for engineering, plumbing, gasfitting &c.
Refs: Drawing, s. & d. 1891, in IAA Workhouse Drawings Collection, Acc. 85/138.84; PRONI, W.H. Stephens & Sons papers, D1898/1/9; IB 33, 1 May 1891, 106; Paul Larmour, Belfast: an illustrated architectural guide (1987), 53 (no. 121, illus.)

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BALLYMENA, PROVINCIAL BANK
Date: 1891
Nature: New bank.
Refs: PRONI D.1898/1/9

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, LIBRARY STREET, BROWN HORSE PUBLIC HOUSE
Date: 1891
Nature: New? For A. Bradley, Esq.
Refs: PRONI, W.H. Stephens & Sons papers, D1898/1/9

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, SYDENHAM, HOUSE
Date: 1892
Nature: New house for William Holmes Smiles, a director of the Belfast Ropeworks.
Refs: PRONI, W.H. Stephens & Sons papers, D1898/1/12

Building: CO. ANTRIM, BELFAST, NORTH STREET, NO. 132-140 (ELEPHANT BUILDINGS)
Date: 1893
Nature: 3-storey red brick building on corner of Winetavern St. For W.J. Maguire.
Refs: PRONI, W.H. Stephens & Sons papers, D1898/1/14; Marcus Patton, Central Belfast: an historical gazetteer (UAHS, 1993), 231(illus.),250

Building: CO. DOWN, COMBER, COMBER DISTILLERY CO.
Date: 1893
Nature: New warehouse.
Refs: PRONI, W.H. Stephens & Sons papers, D1898/1/15

Building: CO. ARMAGH, ARMAGH, HOUSE
Date: 1895
Nature: Tenders invited for erecting new house and office to designs of RGW, Aug 1895.
Refs: Irish Times, 15 Aug 1895.

Building: CO. TYRONE, COALISLAND, HOUSES
Date: 1900ca
Nature: Proposed new houses for J.B. Atkinson, Esq.
Refs: Undated plans in PRONI, D1252/25/23 (see PRONI e-catalogue).