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A Victorian Scottish sandstone chimneypiece,
the architectural frieze incised with stylised flowerhead roundels, the stop-chamfered jambs headed with dogtooth carvings and raised on block feet, the canted overmantel carved in registers,
William Leiper was an influential Victorian architect whose work is found centred in Helensburgh and Glasgow. His style is contemporaneous to, and can clearly be compared with, that of William Burges.
The Victorian villa, from which this fireplace was removed, was demolished due to subsidence. Movement in any building will always be found through window, door and fireplace lintels – the crack suffered in this chimneypiece is evident. However, the load-bearing lintel has now been restored with an I-beam of steel inserted into the load-bearing frieze – it is now stronger than it ever was. Such is the weight of the sectional overmantel above it we have not stuck the pieces together – to do so will make its re-building in its new home more challenging. We anticipate, in building the fireplace the builders will thank us for keeping the component parts smaller, the crack can be filled once the fireplace is built.