The house was completed
in 1890 in Ferguslie Park on the other side of
the railway line from Ferguslie House, again
close to the family business, Ferguslie Mills. It
is said to have been built on the site of the old
Ferguslie Castle. The architect Hippolyte J
Blanc's design was exhibited in 1887, the
stables were built to his design in 1888 as was
the lodge in 1891. There were at least two
extensions to the house including one phase in
1908. It was gifted to the Royal Alexandra
Infirmary as an auxilliary hospital in 1934,
closed in 1972 and demolished in 1980.
This 1930 photo shows
the mills, the pond in Ferguslie gardens,
Ferguslie House and Glencoats (top).
Son of the late Mr.
Thomas Coats, of Ferguslie and Maxwelltown, and
Margaret, daughter of Mr. Thomas Glen, Thornhill,
Renfrewshire, Sir Thomas Glen-Coats was born at Ferguslie House,
Paisley in 184, and was educated at Queenwood
College, Hampshire. He was a director of the
great thread-making firm of J. & P. Coats,
Ltd. He also had a long and honourable service as
an officer of volunteers, being an Honorary
Colonel and formerly Commandant of the 2nd V.B.
Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders.
He assumed the
additional surname of Glen in 1894, and received
the honour of a baronetcy in the same year. A
Liberal in politics, he was a member of various
Liberal clubs and organisations in Glasgow,
Edinburgh, and London. He was elected M.P. for
West Renfrewshire in 1906 and on the death of
Lord Blythswood was appointed Lord Lieutenant of
Renfrewshire in August, 1908. He had two sons and
one daughter. Lady Glen Coats was a very well
respected political campaigner in her own right.
His son Thomas
Glen-Coats was an illustrious designer who worked for A Mylne & Co as a naval architect and
produced some wonderful race winning yachts. His
most famous victory was winning Gold for Great
Britain in the 1908 Olympics. Contested in his
home waters of the Clyde, sailing onboard
Hera, Glen-Coats pushed the Alfred
Mylne designed yacht Mouchette into
Silver medal position. On his father's death in
1922 he became a baronet. The baronetcy became
extinct on his death as he had no children.
BBC - The Yacht Hera: Paisley's
Olympic Champion 1908
The Coats name became famous worldwide. This is
one of the stranger episodes.
Coats Land, a
one-hundred-and-fifty mile stretch of the coast
of the Antarctic continent discovered by the
Scottish National Antarctic Expedition of
1902-1904, was named after the Paisley
thread-manufacturing family, to which the main
financial backers of the Expedition belonged.
Major Andrew Coats and his younger brother
James Coats junior between them provided over
£30,000 of the £36,405 raised to finance the
Expedition, while another brother, Sir Thomas
Glen Coats, contributed generously to the costs
of publishing some of the scientific results.
In The Hospital
World of December 1933, it was reported that
The mansion house and
part of the pleasure grounds of Ferguslie Park,
Paisley, have been presented to the Royal
Alexandra Infirmary, Paisley, as a memorial to
the late Sir Thomas and Lady Glen-Coats and Major
A. Harold Glen-Coats, together with a sum of
money to form an endowment fund which will make a
substantial contribution towards the cost of
maintenance and running expenses. The donors are
Sir Thomas Glen-Coats, Mrs.E. H. T. Parsons, and
One bizarre postcript to
the gift of the hospital to the people of Paisley
was the legend of the ghost of Lady Glen Coats. It was said that she could be
heard playing the piano in the upper part of the
building, when not standing over sleeping
patients. The story was reported in the Paisley
Daily Express so it must be true !