Neil Jackson

House and Years at Fettes:
Glencorse 1965 - 1969

Qualifications & Career:
Dip Arch, MA, PhD, RIBA, FSA

Since 2005 I have been teaching at the University of Liverpool where I hold the Charles Reilly Chair in Architecture. Previously I was the Hoffman Wood Professor of Architectural Engineering at the University of Leeds (2000-2005). I have taught Architecture at the University of Nottingham (1990-2000); at the California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, California (1985-1990); at Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas (1983-1984); and at the Polytechnic of the South Bank, London (1980-85).

Although I am an architect, I work as an architectural historian. I have published seven books on British and American architecture and am currently researching and writing on Japanese architecture. In 2009-11 I held a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship which allowed me to travel frequently to Japan and in 2013 I was a residential Scholar at the Getty Conservation Institute in Los Angeles, California. Although I retain my position in Liverpool, I now live in central London.

What is your most cherished memory from your time at Fettes?
The College building itself. It inspired me to look at architecture.

And your least?
Having the fortnightly class results put on the school noticeboard and seeing my name always at the bottom of the list.

What event or personality left a lasting impression on you?
The pipe band. At Fettes I learned to play the bagpipes and I still play them, although no doubt badly. They have been, over the years, a great asset and introduction.

Were you a conscientious student?
I like to think so. I certainly was in the second year of the 6th Form when Mike Gill, the Art teacher, was so inspiring. I would have him set me essays on art history to research and write.

Outside the classroom, how did you spend your free time at Fettes?
Band practice always took up a lot of time. But I was a keen photographer, using the dark room in the basement of College to develop and print photographs. The sports field never held much of an attraction.