COUNTING HOUSE DOME RESTORATION

The historic centre-piece domed ceiling at The Counting House in Glasgow’s George Square, Wetherspoon’s first pub in Scotland that opened in 1986, is being restored as part of a three-month building project.

The pub was closed for five days at the start of January, to erect the scaffolding for the works to take place. It will also close for a further five days towards the end of March to remove the internal scaffold. The building was originally designed, in the Italian Renaissance Barryesque palazzo style, by architect John Thomas Rochead (1814-78) during 1867-70.

Much of the original Victorian décor remains today including, in the ceiling above the central bar area, a large hemispherical glazed and chequered cupola (dome). The dome is supported around the walls by 16 caryatids – sculpted standing female figures, acting as decorative columns.

The refurbishment project to the listed feature includes a thorough deep clean of the ceiling, as well as essential and much-needed repairs, together with a full redecoration. Damaged curved glass panels, at the top of the dome, are also being replaced, as well as the installation of upgraded lighting to the ceiling, which will further illuminate the wonderful feature of the pub.

Pub manager Mick Murphy, who has been at the pub for 11 years, said, “The Counting House is a spectacular building and the dome the stunning centrepiece, which is now being fully restored. We are proud custodians of the iconic premises and these works will help to preserve our little piece of Glasgow history for generations to come.”

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