John Allan


John Highet Allan (1860–1932) is listed in the Glasgow Post Office Directory from 1886 as a measurer (quantity surveyor) living at 63 Kent Road, Anderston, with no separate business address. By 1893 he had acquired premises at 121 West Regent Street in the city centre, close to professional colleagues and architects' offices, and had joined the Glasgow Institute of Measurers. He was now listed as John H. Allan. By 1902, he was successful enough to move out to a villa in Newlands on the South Side of the city. 1

Allan continued to work from addresses in West Regent Street until around 1910, when he moved his office to 224 St Vincent Street. The following year, he added 'valuator' to his title. This was a subsection of the surveying profession, which estimated the value of buildings or land. By this date, Allan had changed his listed profession to quantity surveyor. 2

In the early 1920s, his sons, Matthew (1887–1967) and Issac Baxter (1892–1952) Allan, joined him as quantity surveyors, and the firm was then listed as 'John H. Allan & Sons, measurers, surveyors, property valuators, and fire assessors'. In 1927 they moved premises to 147 Bath Street, and around 1935, three years after their father's death, the two sons were officially in charge of the firm. Two further moves followed, to 307 West George Street around 1940, and then in 1955, after Issac's death, to 3 Clifton Place around 1955. By the end of the 1970s, the firm, then located at 2 Clifton Street, disappeared from the Post Office directories and had probably been dissolved. 3


1: Glasgow Post Office Directories, 1886–1979; census, birth and death data, [accessed 19 June 2013].

2: Glasgow Post Office Directories, 1886–1979; Francis M. L. Thompson, Chartered Surveyors: The Growth of a Profession, London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1968, p. 256.

3: Census, birth and death data, [accessed 19 June 2013]; Glasgow Post Office directories, 1886–1979; Glasgow Telephone Directory, 1980.