Sir William Pearce 1st Baronet

Biography of Sir William Pearce 1st Baronet

Sir William Pearce
Sir William Pearce

Pearce Lodge is named for Sir William Pearce (1833-1888).

Pearce was born in Kent and trained as a naval architect. In 1864 he was appointed manager of Napier's shipyard in Govan and five years later became a partner with John Ure and J L K Jamieson in John Elder & Co. He became sole partner in 1878 and in 1886 converted the firm to a limited company, the Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. Under his direction, the firm became a world leader in ship design and marine engineering and was most famous for the development of the triple expansion engine.

A Conservative, Pearce was the first MP elected to represent Govan, 1885-1888. His statue still stands at Govan Cross near the Pearce Institute, containing a public hall, library and other rooms, which was gifted to Govan by his widow. Pearce provided funding for the construction of a new lodge at the foot of University Avenue. The lodge was built 1885-1888 and incorporated much of the stonework salvaged from the gateway to the Old College on High Street.


Sir William Pearce 1st Baronet
Shipbuilder and Marine Engineer

Born 8 January 1833.
Died 18 December 1888.
University Link: Benefactor
GU Degree:
Occupation categories: marine engineers; politicians; shipbuilders
Search for this person in the DNB
Record last updated: 28th Aug 2017

University Connections

University Roles

  • Benefactor


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