The Scottish Stained Glass Trust (SSGT) is a charity registered in Scotland. We are interested in stained glass in every shape and form — designing, making, creating, installing (etc.). We focus especially on stained glass in Scotland by any artist from anywhere. We puzzle over old windows trying to identify artists, dates, etc. We try to encourage present day artists who are using this medium to experiment in architectural, sculptural and free standing outdoor forms as well as in traditional windows. We need people to help us by sending in photographs, information and ideas. We are trying to create inventories of Scottish artists including their work in all corners of the world.
Since the recreation of the Scottish Parliament in 1999 the Scottish Executive has identified the importance of cultural activities as a contributor to national well-being, and recent ventures in literature, drama, and music testify to this encouraging cultural atmosphere. However, general awareness of Scotland’s stained lass can be patchy to say the least.
We began as the stained glass Symposium in 2003 when Alison Robertson was working for the Church of Scotland and dealing with applications for new stained glass windows. This was an unstructured forum with only one topic — stained glass. There discussions took place three times a year and the organization developed into the independent Scottish Stained Glass Trust.
The Symposium members include stained glass artists, conservators, historians, and representatives of religious, secular, charitable or public bodies, all having an interest in stained glass in Scotland.
The Symposium has concerns about the proper maintenance of glass, which is too often left in the hands of well-meaning but inadequately skilled carers.
In partnership with the University of Edinburgh Scottish Studies Archive the Scottish Stained Glass Trust made a film Crear McCartney’s Dolphinton Windows (2013). This engaging film showing the making of the windows from start to finish and hearing Crear’s story about the making runs for 45 minutes.
In 2011 the Symposium ran a pilot project to record stained glass in their new national register of stained glass in Scotland. In Autumn 2015, the online Database, hosted by Scran, was launched at www.stainedglasstrustscotland.org.uk. Our Excel database is gradually being converted to the Scran format and new entries are being submitted monthly. A training manual is currently being developed in order for additional volunteers to contribute to the Database.