Glasgow Doors Open Days Festival

10th-16th September, 2018

the city is yours 10 - 16 September, 2018


Glasgow Doors Open Days Festival promotes and celebrates Glasgow’s rich architecture and built heritage. The week long programme highlights the city’s wonderful buildings, throwing open the doors to the public. You can also enjoy: walks, talks, tours, exhibitions and a children’s programme.

The Festival attracts around 26,000 visitors with more 100 open buildings across the city.

View the e-brochure

How to book

Free Bus Service 15 and 16th September, 2018 – Find the route.

Pollok House – Craft Fair and Doors Open Days Saturday 15 September, 2018

Some highlights – although so much to choose from:


Kelvin Hall – National Library of Scotland

Kelvin Hall, 1445 Argyle Street, G3 8AW

Built 1927 and reopened after refurbishment in August 2016

Visit the new National Library of Scotland at Kelvin Hall, which showcases an extensive digital collection of films, maps, books and manuscripts. Go behind the scenes at the Moving Image Archive and learn how Scotland’s film, video and digital collections are preserved and made accessible.
Behind the scenes tours of the Moving Image Archive offered on Saturday 15th September, when films from the 1938 Empire Exhibition and ‘Doon the Watter’ will also be shown.
Tours: Tue-Sun 11am, 12pm, 2pm & 3pm; 60 minutes

Take a look into the city’s past in the Glasgow Museums store at Kelvin Hall. Join us for a tour and see what unusual objects we have in the collection. Book in advance.
The National Library of Scotland will have a programme of events throughout the week. Please check our website for further details of this.
Saturday 15 September:
Find out more about The Hunterian at Kelvin Hall with a behind the scenes collections store tour.
See the objects not on display in the Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery which are kept in our state-of-the-art facility.
The Hunterian Collections store tours (12pm; 1pm; 2pm; 3pm) 30 minutes
Max capacity at any one time is 10
Book on the day (first come first served)

Tour meeting point: Hunterian Collections Study Centre

On the day booking Email:  [email protected]

Further details

Glasgow – City of Glass Walk

kibble palace amazing jim byrne

Kibble Palace, Glasgow Botanics by Jim Byrne

Discover a city of glass on a 10km walk from the Botanic Gardens to the Peoples’ Palace and experience the city from a new perspective.


Children’s Programme

childrens programme doors open

This year’s children’s programme features over 50 free events and activities for kids and families! It also features wonderful illustrations from Glasgow illustrator Sam Russel Walker. Check out the programme online or pick up children’s brochures from Glasgow libraries.

Anchor Line Building

anchor line

The Edwardian Category A listed Anchor Line building has been beautifully renovated from a former cruise line booking office into one of Glasgow’s best restaurants. Original nautical details have been retained to evoke the feel of an ocean liner.

Explore the stunning interior of the Anchor Line building and relive the history through its wonderful memorabilia and beautiful decor. The restaurant is remodelled to resemble a luxurious ocean liner capturing the style and glamour of 20s and 30s era America. Hear the stories of former employees, browse the wide range of posters for luxury cruises, and enjoy footage from the golden age of ocean travel. Our resident historian will be on-hand to answer any questions.

If to schedule, the whole building will be open for public view. Some guest rooms may be open depending on availability.

Fri-Sat 9am-12pm, Sun 9am-5pm

Anchor Line Building, 2-16 St Vincent Place, Glasgow G1 2EU

Details Anchor Line

Anniesland Court


At 22-storeys high, Anniesland Court is the tallest listed building in Scotland and Glasgow’s only Grade A-listed tower block. Visitors will be taken to a top floor to see communal areas and views of the city.

Built between 1968 and 1970 and designed by Jack Holmes & Partners, 843 Crow Road is located in the heart of Anniesland at the junction of Crow Road and Great Western Road. Constructed at a time when the Glasgow Corporation was building tower blocks throughout the city, Anniesland Court remains one of the finest examples of these megastructures. With its split level flats and a separate service tower it was perhaps inspired by Ernő Goldfinger’s Balfron Tower (which itself was the inspiration for his later and more famous Trellick Tower). This is a rare opportunity to visit Anniesland Court, which is fully let and popular amongst residents. Tours will be taken to an upper level with access to the service towers and drying balconies.

Tours: Sat-Sun 12:00pm, 12:45pm, 1:30pm, 2:15pm, 3:00pm, 3:45pm, 4:30pm; 30 minutes

Tour meeting point: Main Entrance, 843 Crow Road, Glasgow G13 1LG

Details and to book

Arlington Baths Club

arlington baths club do

Arlington Baths Club, 61 Arlington Street, G3 6DT

1871, Original John Burnett; 1875 first extension; 1893, 2nd & 3rd extension, Andrew Myles; 1902, 4th extension Benjamin Conner (Cat A)

Arlington Baths Club built in 1870 is the oldest private club of its kind in Europe. A fine example of Victorian architecture, the main facade is well proportioned and gives an effect of modest Classicism. Don’t miss the stunning Turkish Suite!

Originally built during 1871 the building is a fine example of Victorian Architecture of the time. The Club opened on 1 August 1871 with membership drawn from the local area. Members appeared first thing in the morning before work and returned in the evening before going home in a regular twice daily ritual. In 1885 a Turkish Room plus ancillary accommodation was added allowing membership to increase to 600. This Glaswegian homage to the Alhambra with its tiled walls and floors beehive roof studded with star shaped coloured windows sufficient only to light the space dimly, calmed bathers as they reclined on benches in super-heated seclusion. By 1893 architect Andrew Myles added an additional Reading Room and Billiard Room to the south end of the existing building in the form of a single storey with service space below and extended the facade of the building. A third extension was added presumably by Myles which moved the entrance from the centre of the Burnet building to what now emerged as a kind of interregnum between the two phases of the street frontage. This was developed separately as an entrance leading to a grand staircase, which in turn led to the reading room and billiard room on the first floor. Myles emphasised this by means of a triple arched entrance and steps with a five arched loggia above. In 1902, architect Benjamin Conner extended the front wall of the original building directly upwards to create a larger billiard room and long gallery which is now used as a gym, lit by a regular rhythm of single windows.

Tours: Sat-Sun every half hour 10am-4pm; 30 minutes

Tour meeting point: Members Lounge, 61 Arlington Street, Glasgow G3 6DT

Further details

The Friends of Glasgow Necropolis are once again delighted to be involved with Doors Open 2017 and will be undertaking friendly, informative tours of the magnificent Glasgow Necropolis.

Tours lasting approximately two hours.

Britannia Panopticon Music Hall

1st Floor, 117 Trongate  G1 5HD

Thomas Gildard & Robert H.M. McFarlane, 1857

Come and experience the world’s oldest surviving music hall in the heart of Glasgow’s Merchant City where Stan Laurel made his debut in 1906. Find out about its incredible, quirky, and in some cases downright disgusting past.

Opened in 1857, The Britannia Panopticon Music Hall has seen a variety of entertainments including Music Hall shows, cinematograph, waxworks, rooftop carnival and a basement zoo before it closed in 1938. Saved in 1997 by social historian Judith Bowers and currently undergoing a major conservation project. Come and marvel at the wonders hidden within its walls.

Mon-Sun 12pm-5pm

Tours available on request


Activity sheets will be provided for younger visitors including puzzles and colouring sheets depicting fun scenes from Britannia Panopticon and ‘Solomon The Cheeky Chimp’.

Glasgow Central Mosque

Glasgow Central Mosque, 1 Mosque Avenue, G5 9TA


Glasgow Central Mosque is the first purpose-built mosque in Glasgow. Muslims pray, learn, get married or attend funerals and non-Muslims visit throughout the year. See how Islamic architecture and Glasgow’s characteristic red sandstone come together in this unique building.

Please come explore Glasgow Central Mosque which was formally opened in 1984. Built on a 4-acre (16,000 m2) site at a cost of three million pounds the land was acquired and the preferred architectural design meant that the architect had to travel to Turkey and Jeddah. The courtyard of the mosque is in keeping with the traditional Arabesque style. It is enclosed on one of its sides by gardens and on the other by a long façade of arched windows. The main entrance is arched with etched glass doors of a floral design. In the courtyard one of the most noticeable features is the Minaret (tower) where traditionally the Muezzin recites the call to prayer stands. The other more noticeable feature is the dome above the main prayer hall allowing natural light into the building. Inside the mosque is a recess which is called the Mihrab where the Imam stands. The Mihrab points in the direction of Mecca. Enclosed in a walled garden and with a separate minaret, the mosque combines Islamic architecture with the characteristic Old Red Sandstone material used to build many of Glasgow’s buildings.

Sat-Sun 11am-5pm

Tours: 11:30am, 12:30pm, 2:30pm, 3:30pm, 4:30pm; 45 minutes

Meeting point: Small Community Hall, 1 Mosque AvenueGlasgow, G5 9TA

Full details

Greyfriars Garden

greyfriars-garden do

Greyfriars Garden, Shutte Street, G1 1QA

ERZ Architects, 2012.

Greyfriar’s Garden, a tranquil and magical oasis in the Merchant City is a modern garden on a medieval site. Home to raised beds, greenhouses, a wildflower meadow and a picnic space. When you enter, it’s like walking into another world.

It is located in the Medieval City on a site adjacent to the former Franciscan Friary. As Franciscans were known as Greyfriars, we adopted the name as a link to Glasgow’s medieval past. When you step into this magical space you will enjoy seeing the variety of vegetables and flowers grown by the local gardeners and you can lose yourself in the wildflower meadow. Throughout the garden you will see haiku poems displayed on various media. The poems were written by the gardeners and children from St Stephen’s Primary School. Gardeners will be on hand to tell you about their own plot and about the garden. It’s amazing what can be grown in a metre square space. Our gardeners are from the Merchant City, Trongate and Ladywell areas. You’ll spot them as they’ll be wearing the green Greyfriars Garden aprons. Visitors last year were charmed and delighted by the garden and many left inspired. Sadly this may be our last year as plans have been submitted to develop the site. So if you haven’t visited it before, now is the time to do so as we may not be here next year. You can enter via Shuttle Street or via St Nicholas Street.

Wed-Fri 11am-2.30pm, Sat-Sun 10am-5pm


We will have a Garden Discovery Quiz and flower colouring in.

Further details

Glasgow Women’s Library


Glasgow Women’s Library, 23 Landressy Street, G40 1BP

JamesRhind; Collective Architecture 1906 (refurbished 2015),

Visit the beautiful Category B listed Carnegie Library, now home to the world-famous Glasgow Women’s Library since 2013. Find out about the library, archive and its programme of year round events dedicated to women’s lives, histories and achievements.

Open all week, for Doors Open Day GWL are hosting special building tours to let you see behind the scenes, introduce you to the library, its collections and projects, and get your questions answered.

GWL is visited by people from all over the world and from just around the corner. It is a Recognised Collection of National Significance, a status only awarded to those museums that house collections deemed important to telling of a national story.

Mon-Wed & Fri 9.30am-5pm, Thu 9.30am-7.30pm, Sat-Sun 12pm-4pm

Tours: Mon-Fri 1pm (Tue 1pm Get to Know GWL: Building Tour of GWL in Urdu), (Thu 1pm & 6pm (Get to Know GWL: Building Tour in Farsi)), Sat 3pm, Sun 2pm (Opening the Doors to our Archive & Museum Stores Tour) & 3pm; 45 minutes


A drop in craft activity will be on offer for children. All children must be accompanied by an adult.

Further details

Maryhill Burgh Halls


Duncan McNaughton 1878, (Original)

Visit the Category B listed Burgh Halls of the historic Burgh of Maryhill. View the iconic stained glass windows designed by Stephen Adam, learn about the unique heritage of the area’s industrial and social past, and find out who was Mary Hill.

The stunning stained glass windows portray the variety of trades in Maryhill and offer a glimpse into the past of those who lived and worked in the area in the time of renowned maker and designer Stephen Adam. Maryhill, once an expanse of fields in the Gairbraid Estate quickly grew into a thriving industrial area where families flocked to live and work upon the expansion of the Forth and Clyde Canal. The Burgh Halls built in 1878 became a social and civic hub of the community, with a bath house, fire station and police station located next door. Join a tour of the Halls to learn the story of its refurbishment, a story of progression into the 21st Century and celebration of a long standing heritage and find out who was Mary Hill?

Sat-Sun 10am-4pm

Tours: 11am & 2pm; 60 minutes

Meeting point: Reception, 10-24 Gairbraid Avenuw, Glasgow G20 8YE

Bookings: call 0141 946 5149 or email [email protected]

More about the Halls
Further details

Flourish House

Flourish House, 23-25 Ashley Street, G3 6DR

1924, Eric Alexander Sutherland (Cat B)

This striking Category B-listed former church retains its austere and imposing appearance, yet remains a hidden gem within the hustle and bustle of the West End. Now the heart of a vibrant mental health clubhouse, step inside to find a friendly and welcoming community.

Sat 10am-4pm

Tours: Tue & Thu 2pm; 30 minutes

Tour meeting point: In the café space

Booking essential – 0141 333 0099, [email protected]


Arts and Craft stall for children

Meeting point: Café space, 23- 25 Ashley Street, Glasgow G44 4LYBooking essential: 0141 333 0099, [email protected]


Timorous Beasties Printroom and Showroom

Timorous Beasties Printroom and Showroom, 7 Craigend Place, G13 2UN

A rare opportunity to see behind the scenes of design studio, Timorous Beasties. Explore the design and print studio first hand. Witness the screen printers in action printing lengths of fabrics and wallpapers, and find out more about the inspiration behind their world-famous collections.

Come and explore our design and print studio first hand. Witness our screen printers in action printing lengths of fabrics and wallpapers. View large displays of our design collections and find out about the inspiration behind them.

Please note: This event will be held at our design studio, not our showroom on Great Western Road.

Sat-Sun 10am-4pm

Further details

holmwood ceiling window

Holmwood House

Holmwood is a detached house designed by renowned architect Alexander “Greek” Thomson. Masterfully designed but surprisingly cosy, Holmwood is a family home with grand imagination behind it. Visit this inspiring setting to see how the other half lived.

Holmwood was designed by architect Alexander ‘Greek’ Thomson, who is considered to be one of Scotland’s most original designers. Masterfully designed but surprisingly cosy, Holmwood is a family home with grand imagination behind it.

Holmwood house will also be offering cream teas on the day for £5 per person.

Sat-Sun 12pm-5pm


Get creative with building blocks and create your dream building whether it’s a castle or a fortress delve into your imagination like Thomson did to create Holmwood House. Play with mosaic tiles to recreate the patterns you’ll see on the floors or make up your own.

Holmwood House, 61-63 Netherlee Road, Cathcart, Glasgow G44 3YU

Check out the large selection of DOORS OPEN DAYS GLASGOW TALKS


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Avatar of PatByrne Publisher of Pat's Guide to Glasgow West End; the community guide to the West End of Glasgow. Fiction and non-fiction writer.

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