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Listed Building

The legal part of the listing is the address/name of site only. All other information in the record is not statutory.


Status: Designated


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  • Category: A
  • Date Added: 21/07/1988


  • Local Authority: Glasgow
  • Planning Authority: Glasgow
  • Burgh: Glasgow

National Grid Reference

  • NGRNS 58873 65372
  • Coordinates258873, 665372


Circa 1870, interior remodelled 1885-87 and 1901. 4-storey, 7-bay approximately square-plan Classical commercial building with public house at ground floor. Polished buff ashlar. Bands of incised decoration between each floor. Regular fenestration; windows deeply recessed between pilasters with wide pilasters to outer bays and narrower ones to central bays.

FURTHER DESCRIPTION: decorative friezes, cornice and parapet. Regular fenestration divided by pilaster piers, those to top floor with Corithian capitals. Public house with deep cornice above fascia; entrances at 2nd and 6th bays with 2-leaf timber-panelled doors. Art Nouveau-style cast-iron grills above ground floor openings (access to upper floors) at outer bays.

Plate glass in timber sash and case windows; plate glass to pub windows.

INTERIOR: rich Edwardian decorative scheme. Lobbies with decorative timber and etched glass inner 2-leaf doors with elaborate brass door furniture. Compartmented ceiling with deeply moulded cornice. Timber boarded panelling to dado height with carved decorative frieze and inset panels. Rear wall with mirrors to cornice and clock mounted on timber frame; timber chimneypieces with carved detail, horseshoe-shaped openings and pedimented overmantle mirrors. Slate chimneypieces to side walls with horseshoe-shaped openings and horseshoe-shaped overmantles. Elongated timber-boarded horseshoe island bar (with further lobes added at rear); superstructure on slender turned columns; etched glass partitions; terrazzo spittoon. Island gantry with spirit casks, turned columns and deep cornice; cast-iron columns to ceiling with horseshoe detail to capital.

Statement of Special Interest

17-19 Drury Street is a fine Classical building with elements that indicate the influence of Alexander 'Greek' Thomson such as the deeply recessed windows sitting behind the main surface of the building and the incised Classical details. Though much simpler and with a more vertical emphasis than many of Thomson's designs there are distinct similarities between this building and Thomson's Dunlop Street warehouse of 1864-68. The building makes an important contribution to the streetscape of Drury Street and the adjacent Renfield Street and Mitchell Street.

The Horseshoe has an outstanding pub interior. It is highly elaborate with many fine details and has undergone little alteration since the early 20th century. At that time the pub gained its present appearance internally when the partitions between sitting rooms at the sides and the main bar area were removed. The counter was extended and gained the extra 'lobes' at the rear. One of the interesting features is the way in which the horseshoe theme has informed the design of so many of the fittings - the fireplaces, the columns above the gantry etc.

No architect has yet been identified for the Horseshoe. It has been suggested that the publican of the Horseshoe, John Scouller, who had purchased it in 1884, may have been responsible for the design, or at least for the idea of the Horseshoe theme as he was a keen equestrian himself. Two other pubs owned by Scouller, the Snaffle Bar in Howard Street and the Spur in Polmadie Street, had similar horse themes. It is possible that Scouller employed the architect Thomas Baird (1862-1953) to assist with the designs, as Baird designed Scouller's villa in Dalziel Drive about this time.

The Horseshoe is also historically important in the development of the Edwardian public house. From the time it was renovated in the 1880s it was considered to be a trail-blazer. The island bar layout became de rigeur in Glasgow for higher class pubs from the 1890s, enabling quick service and better supervision of customers. Many publicans from as far afield as Inverness and Aberdeen, visited it, took measurements and borrowed ideas from the design which they used to enhance their own pubs. By the early 1900s the pub had become something of a Glasgow institution and was as popular with prosperous merchants as with humble clerks. Category changed from B to A in 2008 as part of the Thematic Review of Heritage Pubs.



2nd Edition Ordnance Survey map (1899). 3rd Edition Ordnance Survey map (1922). Rudolph Kenna and Anthony Mooney, People's Palaces: Victorian and Edwardian Pubs of Scotland (1983) pp103-104. Gavin Stamp and Sam McKinistry (eds), 'Greek' Thomson (1994), pp120, 128-30. Michael Slaughter (Ed.), Scotland's True Heritage Pubs: Pub Interiors of Special Historic Interest (2007), pp60-61.

About Designations

Listed Buildings

We list buildings of special architectural or historic interest and these are selected according to criteria published in the, Annex 2, pp74-76.

The information in the listed building record gives an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building(s). It is not a definitive historical account or a complete description of the building(s). The format of the listed building record has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

Enquiries relating to works to listed buildings should be made to the local authority in the first instance. Listed building consent is required for works which a local authority considers will affect its character as a building of special architectural or historic interest and local authorities also decide if listed building consent is required.

Listing covers both the exterior and the interior. Listing can cover structures not mentioned which are part of the curtilage of the building, such as boundary walls, gates, gatepiers, ancillary buildings etc. The local authority is responsible for advising on what is covered by the listing including the curtilage of a listed building. For information about curtilage see

Legislation introduced on 1 October 2015 allows us to state that: an object or structure fixed to the listed building; any object or structure within the curtilage of the listed building; and, any part or feature of the listed building that is not of architectural or historic interest may be excluded from a listing. If part of your building is not listed under the new legislation, the part will be excluded in the statutory address and in the statement of special interest. The statement will use the word 'excluding' and quote the relevant section of the Historic Environment Scotland Act 2014. Some earlier listed building records may use the word 'excluding', but if the Act is not quoted, the record has not been revised to reflect current legislation.

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