Dictionary of Irish Architects 1720 - 1940

Architect, of Dalkey, Co. Dublin, and London.   Frederick William Porter, second son of William Edward Porter (1783-1859) and his wife Anne (née Coultate) was born on 19 October 1821 in Rathmines, Dublin, where his father, who came from Kent, was Clerk of Recognizance at the Court of Chancery.   He was a pupil of LEWIS VULLIAMY  LEWIS VULLIAMY in London but subsequently returned to Ireland and took up residence in Kent Terrace, Dalkey, a terrace of four houses on Barnhill Road which had been built by his father in 1839.(1) .  'F.W. Porter' of Kent Terrace, Dalkey exhibited three architectural designs at the Royal Hibernian Academy in 1843(2) and  'Frederick William Porter, architect' is listed in the Dublin trades directories at 1 Kent Terrace from 1848.   In October 1848 he married Sarah Moyle in Liverpool.   Although he continues to appear in the Dublin directories until at least 1853, he had moved to London by 1849,  when he and W.A. Boulnois exhibited a design for a county lunatic asylum at the Royal Academy  from 13 Charlotte Street.(3) He was still at the latter address when he became a fellow of the RIBA in 1855.   In 1860 he succeeded SAMUEL ANGELL  SAMUEL ANGELL as Surveyor to the Clothworkers' Company.(4)    In this capacity he visited the Clothworker's 'Proportion' in Co. Derry in 1863, reporting on his visit in October of that year. He designed the Church of Ireland church at Castlerock, Co. Derry (1868-1870).(5)   In the Building Trades Directory (1868), he  claimed to have built 'residences in England, Ireland, Spain, Shanghai, &c.'  Although continuing to practise in London until at least 1874,(6) he later lived in Hythe, Kent,(7) where he died on 17 November1901. He was the father of HORATIO PORTER.  HORATIO PORTER.

Addresses:  Kent Terrace, Dalkey, 1843;  1 Kent Terrace, Dalkey, 1848;  13 Charlotte Street, London, 1849->=1855;  16 Russell Square, <=1866->=1874;  Marine Terrace, Hythe, Kent, 1891;  Moyle Tower, Hythe, at time of death.

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All information in this entry not otherwise attributed is from Directory of British Architects 1834-1914 (RIBA 2001), II, 393, and from Boyd M. Porter, Enderby, Leicestershire, a direct descendant of Frederick William Porter's father, William Edward Porter (by e-mail, 24 Sep 2009).

(1) See Peter Pearson, Between the Mountains and the Sea: Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County(1998), 113.  The Porters were substantial landowners in Dalkey.
(2) These were designs for the north and south fronts of a rectory (nos. 608, 611) and a 'Design for a Garden front for a Mansion' (no. 620). 
(3) Graves.
(4) See J. Stevens Curl, The Londonderry Plantation 1609-1914 (1986), 392,394,395,Pl.316.
(5) Contract drawing in RCB library, portfolio10;  IB 10, 1 Aug 1868, 195; 12, 1 Jul 1870, 146; B 28, 16 Jul 1870, 572.
(6) Graves.
(7) The English census returns for 1891 record him as a 69-year-old architect and surveyor, living at Marine Terrace, Hythe, with his English-born wife, Sarah, and a married daughter; he also appears in the census returns for 1871, when he was staying as a visitor in Westonbirt House, which had been designed by his master, Lewis Vulliamy, for Robert Holford.

4 work entries listed in chronological order for PORTER, FREDERICK WILLIAM

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Date: 1839
Nature: Terrace of four Tudor-style houses built by Edward William Porter, in design of which FWP, though very young, may possibly have had a hand.
Refs: Peter Pearson, Between the Mountains and the Sea: Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County(1998), 113(illus.)

Date: 1843
Nature: Design for entrance gates. (Unexecuted?)
Refs: Design, s. & d. Dalkey, 1843, in NLI (bought Mealy's Auctioneers, Dec 2008, Lot 1122).

Date: 1860
Nature: Plan for laying our part of Waterside for building purposes, for Clothworkers' Company.
Refs: James Stevens Curl, The Londonderry Plantation, 1609-1914 (1986), 392,Pl.316

Date: 1868-1870
Nature: New Early English church with tower and spire. To accommodate 200. Opened Jul 1870. Cost: about £3,000. Supervising Architect: William Hunter, architect to the Church Commissioners. Contractor: George & Robert Ferguson, Derry. Stained glass windows in chancel erected at expense of Lady Bruce;  central on in memory of her uncle, Gen. Sr Arthur Benjamein Clifton.
Refs: Contract drawing, signed by FWP, May 1868, and contractors in RCB Library, portfolio 10, see Hugh Dixon, Ulster Architecture 1800-1900 (UAHS, 1973), 19 (no. 79, illus.); IB 10, 1 Aug 1868, 195; 12, 1 Jul 1870, 146; B 28, 16 Jul 1870, 572; J.B. Leslie, Derry Clegy and Parishes (1937), 145; Hugh Dixon, Ulster Architecture 1800-1900 (UAHS, 1973), 19 (no. 79, illus.); Alistair Rowan, The Buildings of Ireland: North West Ulster (1979), 186; James Stevens Curl, The Londonderry Plantation, 1609-1914 (1986), 395; illus. in Clergy of Derry & Raphoe (Ulster Historical Foundation, 1999), 54, and Claude Costegalde & Brian Walker, The Church of Ireland: an illustrated history (2013), 166.