A bird’s eye view of Glenlair

Glenlair Birdseye View

A bird’s eye view of Glenlair on the 190th anniversary of the birth of James Clerk Maxwell prepared for the Orkney Science Festival 2021.

Visit by Professor Isobel Falconer

Glenlair Yard Entrance

On a beautiful summer’s day, Professor Isobel Falconer, accompanied by her daughter Jennifer paid a visit to James Clerk Maxwell’s home at Glenlair. Until recently Isobel was the curator of the Cavendish Museum in Cambridge and as one might expect her knowledge of Maxwell and his life was encyclopaedic! One very interesting outcome of the …

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Recent Repairs and Maintenance

Damaged Lintel

After a somewhat hectic year in 2016, we have taken the opportunity to carry out essential work on the building to ensure its continued survival. All windows and gutters were cleaned and painted, and a broken lintel was gingerly replaced.

Visit by a group from Quests and Retreats

By the Lair burn

On a somewhat overcast and rather driech day, Glenlair was enlivened by the arrival of a group of enthusiasts led by Dr. Jan Hogarth and accompanied by the renowned harpist Wendy Stewart intent on discovering just how the setting, the scenery and the landscape influenced Professor James Clerk Maxwell in his pursuit of those mysterious …

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Visit by Panel for Historic Engineering Works

A party of almost 30 members of the Institute of Civil Engineers (Scotland) led by their Chairman, Prof/Dr. Roland Paxton MBE, FICE,FRSE visited Glenlair primarily to view the bridge designed and built by William Dyce Cay in 1866 for his cousin James Clerk Maxwell. Whilst here they took the opportunity to witness the recent works …

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Visit by Professor and Mrs Philip Marston

Prof Marston outside the Maxwell visitor centre

Professor Marston and his wife Trude fulfilled a life-long ambition to visit the home of James Clerk Maxwell. Prof. Marston, who is in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Washington State University has written extensively about Maxwell including co-authoring a new book entitled James Clerk Maxwell – Perspectives on his Life and Work recently …

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Glenlair opens its door to celebrate Maxwell’s 150th Anniversary

Glenlair opens its door to celebrate Maxwell's 150th Anniversary

Glenlair will hold a public open day on Sunday 12th July 2015 to celebrate internationally renowned physicist James Clerk Maxwell’s 150th anniversary of his great paper on electromagnetism and light. As part of the UNESCO International Year of Light, the Glenlair open day is set to attract both local and international visitors who have both an interest in finding more about Maxwell the …

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Visitor Centre Re-opens

Glenlair Visitor Centre July 2014

After almost a year, whilst the oldest part of Glenlair House was being rebuilt, the James Clerk Maxwell visitor centre is again open to visitors. For those Maxwell enthusiasts who would like to visit please make an appointment, by email to

Tutto Finito

Glenlair House 1826

At last and very nearly on schedule, Glenlair House has arisen from the ashes and Angus and Frances can start moving into their new home. As with any project of this scale there are of course minor adjustments still to be made, but to all extents and purposes, the job is done. Interestingly enough the …

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Quite a transformation

Glenlair House August 2013

The scaffold is down and the roof is complete affording the opportunity to see just what has been achieved since August 2013. Of course there is still lots to be done, not least in the way of landscaping, but externally at least from the rear view, the building is complete.