Thomas Symington Halliday

Thomas Symington Halliday MBE FRSA (11 April 1902 – 22 May 1998) was a Scottish artist and teacher. Although Halliday was an accomplished sculptor, painter and teacher, he is also known for his designs for stained glass windows.

Thomas Symington Halliday
Born(1902-04-11)11 April 1902
Died22 May 1998(1998-05-22) (aged 96)
EducationGlasgow School of Art
Known forSculpture, Painting, Stained Glass


Halliday was born in Thornhill near Dumfries. His father was a grain merchant and he grew up on a farm.[1] After attending Ayr Academy, Halliday spent some years working as a marine engineer on the River Clyde in Glasgow before he enrolled at the Glasgow School of Art.[2] Helped by the artist Norman Forrest, Halliday began his career as a sculptor in 1932 and would, in due course, produce figures of animals and birds in wood, bronze and terracotta.[2]

Halliday worked as the Art Master at Prestwick High School for several years and also taught at Ayr Academy. In 1941 he was appointed principal of the art department at the High School of Dundee, a post he retained until he retired in 1965.[1] During World War Two, Halliday painted ship building and naval camouflage operations on the Clyde.[3] Two of these paintings were subsequently purchased by the War Artists' Advisory Committee and are now held by the Imperial War Museum in London.[4] Later he was commissioned to paint a large mural of the Battle of Narvik for the Royal Naval Dockyard at Rosyth.[1] In 1947 he co-edited, with the poet George Bruce, the magazine Scottish Sculpture.[3]

For many years, Halliday lived at Wormit at Newport-on-Tay.[5] There he carved the war memorial for the parish church and designed a coat of arms for the Town Council. Newport-on-Tay Town Council also commissioned him to produce a carving of a stag, which they presented to the Queen in 1958.[1] He designed numerous stained glass windows including several for parish churches in and around Ayr and Dundee.[3] He was a founding member of the Guild of Aviation Artists, was a member of the Royal Society of Marine Artists and was elected to Society of Scottish Artists in 1943.[3] In 1963 he exhibited works with the New Scottish Group.[3] Halliday was also a regular exhibitor with both the Royal Scottish Academy and the Royal Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts.[5] He was awarded an MBE in 1963.[6]


  1. Dougie Miller (26 May 1998). "Thomas Halliday". The Herald (Scotland). Retrieved 20 October 2017.
  2. Peter J.M. McEwan (1994). The Dictionary of Scottish Art and Architecture. Antique Collectors' Club. ISBN 1 85149 134 1.
  3. David Buckman (1998). Artists in Britain Since 1945 Vol 1, A to L. Art Dictionaries Ltd. ISBN 0 95326 095 X.
  4. "Correspondence with Artists, Thomas S Halliday". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 24 October 2017.
  5. Grant M. Waters (1975). Dictionary of British Artists Working 1900-1950. Eastbourne Fine Art.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  6. "Mapping the Practice & Profession of Sculpture in Britain & Ireland 1851-1951". University of Glasgow History of Art / HATII. 2011. Retrieved 20 October 2017.
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