All Saints Jordanhill, which celebrated its centenary on 1st November 2004, owes its existence to a remarkable woman – Jane Charlotte Smith – who lived with her parents in Jordanhill Mansion, now Jordanhill College.
In 1853 she was visiting the cottages of the miners and other labourers in the district and started a school for them, firstly in Jordanhill Mansion, and then in a barn where Episcopalian services were held. Encouraged by her success she started collecting funds for a chapel school, which was opened in 1861 with 120 children attending. Communion services were provided by visiting priests from St John’s, Baillieston.
During a visit to the ill and infirm in the hamlets of the district, Jane caught typhus from a small child, and died in 1864, aged 35 years. The magnificent Triple Oriel East Window above the High Altar is dedicated to her memory, and was placed in 1911, the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Chapel School.
A glance at the Baptismal Registers reveals that in the early years the Revd J Watson Reid baptised over 1000 children, and on one Friday evening 40 infant baptism took place!
With the growth of state education the school closed in 1892, but by this time a curate had been appointed to take charge. Sales of work and concerts were held to raise funds to replace what is now the church hall. In 1903 a grand bazaar was held for three days, in the Fine Art Institue on Sauchiehall Street and over £1000 was raised for the building fund – an astronomical sum at the time.
In 1904 a start was made building the present church, which was to cost £5000, and on All Saints Day 1904 the church was dedicated by Bishop Campbell, the newly consecrated Bishop of the Diocese. Later a rectory was built and a mission Church, St David’s, opened in Whiteinch.
In the last 100 years the Jordanhill district has changed beyond all recognition, housing developments have replaced fields and open farmland.
The building itself has been enlarged, and the old rectory demolished to make way for a new development. A reredos by Scottish Artist Phoebe Anne Traquair has been installed over the High Altar, and additional stained glass work has been added. The original church, now the hall, is still in use for congregational events, and by Scouting groups, in addition to returning to its use as an education establishment, now being the new home of Westbourne Gardens Nursery School.
All Saints can still count among its members families going back two or three generations, with links through the Sunday School, uniformed organisations, the choir and All Saints Players – the church’s amateur dramatics group.
At the centenary celebrations former clergy and many friends and former members joined together for worship, at both a Eucharist, presided by the current Bishop Most Revd Idris Jones, and on All Saints Day itself, a splendid choral evensong, with a choir augmented with those from the choirs of St Mary’s Cathedral, St Bride’s, Hyndland, and St Ninian’s, Troon. The preacher was the Dean of the Diocese, the Very Revd Gregor Duncan. A Centenary Dinner was held at the City Chambers.
In 1851, Jane Charlotte Smith, daughter of Archibald Smith, the owner of Jordanhill Estate, was holding Sunday School classes in a room in Jordanhill mansion.
Within a few years, thanks to the efforts of the Revd J Watson Reid of Christ Church, Mile End, ably assisted by Jane Smith, a Mission Church was erected in 1861.
The magnificent reredos was designed by Sir Robert Lorimer and executed in beautifully carved oak. The centre panel and two side panels were painted by Phoebe Anne Traquair – one of two examples of her work in Glasgow. There are nine stained glass windows, the major work being the Triple Oriel east window depicting Christ in Majesty.