Pollok House
Pollok House
Pollok House is a Georgian mansion extended in the early 19th century for the Maxwell family. The house contains collections of Spanish and European painting including works by El Greco, Murillo, and Goya, plus antique furniture, porcelain, silver and glassware. The house is set in 360 acres of parkland.
The house was built in 1752, but the Maxwell family lived here from the 13th century! The rhododendron garden looks a peaceful spot now, but imagine what it must have looked like in the early 13th century when a castle was erected here. A second castle was built 2 centuries later near the current stable block, and then a third castle, on the same site.

The elegant house was begun in 1752 but it was not until Sir John Stirling Maxwell called in architect Robert Rowand Anderson in 1890 that the mansion took on its current form. Maxwell was one of the founder members of the National Trust for Scotland, so it seems appropriate that the house is now in the care of the Trust.

If we owe the house itself to Sir John Stirling Maxwell, we owe the superb art collection to his father, William Stirling Maxwell, whose European travels left him with a love of Spain and Spanish art. He not only collected some of the finest paintings outside Spain itself, he wrote the first English reference to Spanish art.

The house interiors are furnished to give a taste of country houseliving in the 1930s, in the twilight of the great era of stately homes in Britain. The ornate state rooms are lavishly decorated and provide the perfect backdrop for the Maxwell family's collection of fine art.

Pollok House also shows what life was like for the staff who kept the house running. Go 'below stairs' with a visit to the huge array of servant's quarters. Try to imagine the lifestyle that required 48 servants to provide for just 3 family members!

Edwardian furniture and furnishings give a taste of what life was like for the Maxwells and their guests. Visit the billiard room, now converted into a dining room, and see a library designed to hold a staggering 7,000 books.

Much of the Pollok House grounds are now a large country park, but closer to the house is a walled garden with glasshouses and a stable block. Further afield are woodlands and pleasant riverside walks through the parkland. The gardens are especially noted for rhododendrons, with over 1,000 different varieties. Behind the house is a beech tree that may be over 250 years old.

If you fancy a stroll, the Burrell Collection is just a 10 minute walk across the country park.