Glasgow's very own "Arc de Triomphe" sits at the re-designed Saltmarket entrance to Glasgow Green, the Civic Centre laid out in 1991/92. It was not the first artifact to be placed upon the Green, but it is currently the oldest. This much travelled piece of architecture was originally part of the facade of Robert and James Adam's 1796 Glasgow Assembly Rooms (the Athenaeum) in Ingram St.. The central arch through which people now walk, once framed a window. When the Assembly Rooms were taken down in 1892 to allow for an extension to the Central Post Office, the arch was saved and reconstructed as an entrance to the Green at the junction of Greendyke St. and Monteith Row.
In 1924 it was again moved, on this occasion to form an entry to the Green at the end of Charlotte St.. Due to a fault in the foundations, the arch began to tilt and rather than rebuild on the same site, it was transferred to its present location, facing the High Court in Saltmarket, in 1991/92. The arch is known as the McLennan Arch after Baillie James McLennan who presented it to the city, and is inscribed to that effect.
The McLennan Arch at the foot of Charlotte Street, 1975.
© 2005 Gordon Adams
NOTES: Updated for 1st March, 2010.
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