Collection SC131 - Richard Roskell Bayne collection

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Title proper

Richard Roskell Bayne collection

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Collection

Reference code

CA UVICARCH SC131

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Dates of creation area

Date(s)

  • 1864 - 1884, 1994-2007 (Creation)
    Creator
    Bayne, Richard Roskell, 1827-1901

Physical description area

Physical description

728 sketches, 8 diaries, 162 photographs, 23 CDs, 346 slides, 2 floppy disks, 27 architectural plans

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Name of creator

(1827-1901)

Biographical history

Richard Roskell Bayne was born in Stoneleigh, Warwickshire on 7 July 1837 to Richard Bayne (1801-1878) and Ann Turnill (1803-1940), who had married 19 October 1834. Richard Roskell has an older sister Ann, a younger brother Robert Turnill, and younger sister Mary. His brother Robert (1837-1915) became a prominent stained glass artist with the firm Heaton, Butler, and Bayne. Richard received his first training in architecture from his father. In 1858, Bayne worked in the office of the architect Charles Barry while attending classes at University College, University of London. By 1859 he was studying at the South Kensington School of Design in London, and in 1860 was awarded the Queen's Prize by that institution. After completing a year of travel in Europe, Bayne returned to London where he worked in the office of architect Digby Wyatt. In 1864, he passed the Royal Institute of British Architects Voluntary Architectural Examination, and was also awarded the RIBA Soane Medal. This prize enabled Bayne to make an extensive sketching tour in Europe in 1864-1865. Bayne entered the service of the East India Railway Company on 20 March 1866 and moved to Calcutta. By the time he retired from the Company on 30 April 1890, he had earned the rank of district engineer. Bayne’s major projects in India were:


  • Sir Stuart Hogg Market (Kolkata, 1874)
  • Thornhill and Mayne Memorial Library (Allahabad, 1878)
  • Mayo Memorial Hall (Allahabad, 1879)
  • East India Railway Offices aka Fairlie Place (Kolkata, 1881)
  • Husainabad Clock Tower (Lucknow, 1881)

On 13 March 1866 Bayne married Eleanor Sparkes in Woolbridge, Suffolk. They had four children who survived into adulthood: Stanley Richard Sparkes (1866-1933), Percy Robert Clitherall (1870-19??), Talbot Harold Knights (1872-1951), and Digby Mason Septimus (1878-1967). They also had three children who died in infancy: Sybil (d. 1872), Douglas (d. 1873), and Lennox (d. 1875). Eleanor died 4 April 1882 at age 39 in Kurseong, India. Bayne later remarried to his sister-in-law, Daisy Sparkes, 30 years his junior. In 1890 she gave birth to a daughter. Several of Bayne’s children had immigrated to Canada and settled on Vancouver Island. After his retirement Bayne and his family moved to Victoria, British Columbia, where he opened an architectural office in May 1891. In 1898 he entered the Asylum for the Insane in New Westminster. He died there of a seizure on 4 December 1901 at age 73, and is buried in the Ross Bay Cemetery in Victoria.

For more information see the paper “Building for the Raj: Richard Roskell Bayne” by Anthony Welch, Martin Segger, and Nicholas DeCaro in Canadian Art Review 34.2 (2009).

Custodial history

Scope and content

The collection consists of 735 items, the majority of which are drawings and watercolours produced by Bayne on a European sketching tour in 1864-65 made possible by the Soane Medal award in 1864. Bayne spent four months in France (August-December 1864), sketching Romanesque and Gothic churches at Amiens, Soissons, Noyon, Angers, Toulouse, and along the Loire. Bayne travelled to Spain where he spent three months (Jan. - March 1865) documenting sites in the Pyrenees he believed would soon be lost to warfare and neglect, recording stained glass windows and other architectural details of Gothic and Romanesque structures, and visiting sites with important Moorish architecture. Bayne's Spanish work is the most comprehensive of the collection. He also made careful notations on his drawings and sketches with a complete numbering system, identification of the city, structure and facade, and the date of the work. From Spain, Bayne travelled to Naples where he spent about a week in Sicily. He went on to Greece and Turkey for a month (April - early May 1864), apparently going from Athens to Salonica and south to Constantinople. Many of the drawings are missing from this series, but show his interest in Byzantine churches and Islamic architecture in Greece and Turkey. He returned to Naples for a four month tour of Italy (May - August 1864). The collection includes a few drawings from Pompeii, panoramic views of Rome, architectural drawings of Renaissance and Medieval structures from Rome, Venice, Milan, Florence, Pisa, and Assisi, and sketches of architectural details such as stained glass in Assisi and the Baptistery doors in Florence. In September, 1864, Bayne was in Germany, but only a few of these drawings remain. The information about them is limited as they are dated or numbered, but the sites are not recorded on most. After Bayne accepted a position with the East India Railway Company in 1866, he moved to Calcutta, India. Part of the collection includes sketches he made on tours in India, and illustrates Muslim and Hindu structures in Benares, Delhi, Allahabad, Madras, Ahmadabad, Bombay, Brindabun, Chitor, Moorabad, and Calcutta. At least four structures in India are attributed to Bayne: the East India Railway offices (1881-84), the Huseinabad Clock Tower at Lucknow (1881-85), the Mayo Memorial Hall at Allahabad (1879), and the Thornhill and Mayne Memorial Library at Allahabad (1878). The presentation drawing for the latter structure is included in the collection as a donation from the Port Alberni Historical Society. The other items in the collection include a photograph of Bayne, several covers of his original European notebooks, and two certificates, one of which commemorates his achievement in passing the Voluntary Architectural Examination in 1864 with distinction, and the second certifying his election as an Associate of the Royal Institute of British Architects.

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Inventory available.

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Accruals

1995-005, 2007-050, 2009-015, 2015-039, 2017-072

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Description record identifier

richard-roskell-bayne-collection

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Dates of creation, revision and deletion

Revised by JF, August 7, 2013.

Language of description

  • English

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