See also NS3578 : St Peter's College
, which includes links to more images of this building.
(For the early history of the Kilmahew lands, see NS3578 : Kilmahew Castle
; the present article concentrates on the twentieth-century seminary, and the Victorian structures nearby.)
For a much fuller account than is given below, see "Cardross Seminary: Gillespie, Kidd & Coia and the Architecture of Postwar Catholicism" [RCAHMS, 1997], from which these details were obtained.
The need for a new seminary arose in 1946, after a fire (which began during dry rot repairs) destroyed St Peter's College in Bearsden. The college moved to NS3480 : Darleith House
in that year, then to Kilmahew House in 1948. Kilmahew House stood behind the structures shown in this photograph (it was at NS35287844
), but it was damaged by fire in November 1995, and was demolished soon afterwards; see Link
(at Canmore) for further details of the house, and for pictures of the building.
The new St Peter's Seminary, part of which is shown in the present photograph, was built from 1961-68, but opened in 1966. It enclosed the older Kilmahew House on three sides. This new seminary was in use for only a few years; it closed in 1980.
At the time when this photograph was submitted, there were plans to revitalise Kilmahew Estate.
Part of a BBC documentary called "Four Modern Buildings" was filmed here in March 1966. The interior of the building was also the subject of a short film (about twenty minutes) called "Space and Light" (1972), directed by Murray Grigor.
The present photograph shows several parts of the building. The curving section at the far left is the sanctuary block, in which the sanctuary was located at ground level, and the crypt and sacristy below. Near the centre of the photograph, the five pillar-like features with domed tops are individual side-chapels; five, shown here, are attached to the near side of the main chapel, and another five are attached to the far side.
The taller part of the building, from the centre to the right, is the main block. This contained, amongst other things, a hall and a refectory. A pool, crossed by a footbridge, ran along its near side, rather like a moat. Not visible in this image, but located behind the sanctuary block, is the classroom block; this included a library below ground level.
Other parts of the estate date from the Victorian era. These include Kilmahew House, mentioned above, which was built for John William Burns. Associated with that house were the two lodges of the estate (see NS3478 : Remains of the West Lodge
and NS3577 : Remains of the South Lodge
), a stone footbridge over the Kilmahew Burn (NS3577 : Stone bridge in Kilmahew Estate
), a pool (NS3578 : Pond in Kilmahew Estate
), and numerous tracks.