What’s happening with Glasgow’s Teacher building?

The beautiful building in the city centre may have a new lease of life as a bar and restaurant.

What is the Teacher building? Built in 1875 to house the headquarters and whisky shop of William Teacher & Sons, it was designed by architect James Boucher, known primarily for his involvement in the design of the Kibble Palace in Glasgow. It is known affectionately to many Glaswegians as the Teacher building.

What is the Teach building used for now? The building has more recently been used as a conference centre for the Institute of Engineering and Technology.

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In 2019 a design firm has submitted plans for a £6 million project to bring whisky back to the former home of Teacher's Whisky. The proposals sought to convert the site into a whisky-themed bar and restaurant with 25 serviced apartments on the upper floors. The design also included plans to refurbish the iconic gilded Teacher signage in full.

Mosaic Architecture + Design said the development, which they are proposing on behalf of Big Top Productions, would create 15 jobs and “reinvigorate” the area.

This planning permission was granted.

What has happened since? The building is currently on the market with Shepherd, with a price tag of offer over £1.35m.

It is described as a ‘prime city centre development opportunity’ with managing partner of Shepherd, Steven Barnett, saying: “Representing a prime city centre development opportunity for the consented bar, restaurant and serviced apartment consent, the Teacher building also offers an excellent opportunity for an occupier or office investor to acquire a well-appointed landmark office HQ in an improving location suitable for immediate occupation.”

With big names such as Soho House and Sexy Fish apparently due to open in Glasgow, it’ll be interesting to see if someone does indeed bring whisky back to the Teacher building. And, with many people outraged at the plans to demolish a Victorian building in Finnieston, here’s hoping this gem of a building gets a new life soon.