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VEALE, Harry George

Born: 1868
Died: 1924 12 16


'Men of today ... have an opportunity to trend the moulding of a South African character. America has done something in the way of character, surely we may be able, with our happy, sunny climate and temperament, to reflect this in our buildings, not in the way of silly novelties, but in a dignified and restrained manner' (Afr Archt Sep 1911:78), Veale stated in 1911, on becoming President of the Association of Transvaal Architects. He was a zealous architect who worked hard to promote all aspects of an emerging profession in South Africa.

Veale was born and educated in Southampton, England. He was articled in London to JJ Stevenson, BA, FSA, FRIBA, for five years from about 1884, studying at the Royal Academy and at the South Kensington Schools. In 1889 he came to South Africa and settled in Johannesburg where he found it difficult to obtain work. Nevertheless, 'after a few months he was lucky enough to win a competition for a fairly large Dutch Reformed Church at Heidelberg' (Afr Archt Sep 1911:78), which he designed in association with AC BRISLIN (1889-91). He worked for a while in Durban, employed by WE ROBARTS in whose office he met John WATERSON, entering into partnership with Waterson in 1898 (cf WATERSON & VEALE). The partners may have worked in Johannesburg together before the Anglo-Boer War, however, 'during the war period, Mr Veale went again to Durban and practised there from 1900 to 1905' (Afr Archt Sep 1911:78), still in partnership with Waterson. Veale and Waterson were founder members of the Natal Institute of Architects in 1901 and, according to Hillebrand (1975:209) worked in Durban until 1906. Veale's interest in the emerging architectural profession was evident when, as a Member of Council of the NIA from 1903 to 1905, he tried, with CW METHVEN, W LUCAS and others, to put a Registration Act for Architects through the Natal Legislature but was unsuccessful. In about 1906 he made a trip to England and Europe, returning to Johannesburg about 1907. On his return he urged the need for an architect's benevolent fund and founded this in about 1908, EH WAUGH and W REID supporting his efforts in establishing the first Trust Deed of the Fund. Veale sought for more cooperation between architects, the allied arts and the layman which he considered would benefit the nature of South African architecture.

In 1908 he and WATERSON won the competition for the new Central Fire Station in Johannesburg. In 1910, collaborating with AM RITCHIE, he submitted a plan for the layout for Church Square in Pretoria (Pretoria News 7 Oct 1910 ill). In 1912 Veale was elected President of the Association of Transvaal Architects. Veale was placed fourth in the competition for Benoni Town Hall (1918). In the same year he acted as moderator and co-examiner of the examination held by the School of Mines and Technology for qualification for membership of the ATA and was elected President of the Society of Architects, (London), South African Branch, for the year 1918-1919. In 1924 he was appointed consulting architect for the South African pavilion at the Wembley Exhibition in 1924, designed by Maxwell AYRTON: 'a building which by the way, I think is architecturally the best of the pavilions and most in keeping with the architecture of the colony it represents' (Maxwell 1924:28). This was among the last of Veale's jobs. He died in Johannesburg the same year.

(Afr Arch Jun 1911:21; Afr Archt Sep 1911:78 port; Afr Archt Sep 1912:50-52; Afr Archt Dec 1919:11; ISAA Ybk 1931/32:40, 41; Jnl ATA Feb 1916:8; Longland's Jhb & SAR dir 1899; Longland's Tvl dir 1904, 1905; SAB Jan 1925:37 obit; SAAR Mar 1925 death notice; SAWW 1908; British Empire Exhibition official catalogue 1924:383; UTD 1907)

Publ: Architects and the corporate sense, Afr Archt May 1912:215-6; Architects visit the Union Buildings, Afr Archt May 1912:214; The late Mr AW Hoskins, Afr Archt Jul 1912:25; South African branch of the society of architects, Afr Archt Jan 1913: The late James Donald ANDERSON, Jnl ATA Feb 1916:8-9 obit; Suggested war memorial for Johannesburg, Building Sep 1918:195-196 ill between pp. 190-191; Dean of Guild, Town planning committee, Building Dec 1918:202-3; South African Academy, Building Dec 1919:315; Town planning, Building Dec 1920:423

All truncated references not fully cited in 'References' are those of Joanna Walker's original text and cited in full in the 'Bibliography' entry of the Lexicon.

List of projects

With photographs
With notes

Anglo-African House: 1901-1904. Durban, KwaZulu-Natal - Design Architect
Club Arcade: 1901. Durban, KwaZulu-Natal - Design Architect
Nederduitse Gereformeerde Kerk - Klipkerk: 1890-1891. Heidelberg, Gauteng - Architect

Books citing VEALE

Hillebrand, Melanie. 1975. Aspects of architecture in Natal, 1880 1914. Pietermaritzburg: Unpublished MA. Dept Fine Art and History of Art, University of Natal. pp 209

Kesting, DP. 1978. Afrikaans Protestantse kerkbou : erfenis en uitdaging. Port Elizabeth: Unpublished PhD. pp

Maxwell, Donald. 1924. Wembley in colour : being both an impression and a memento of the British Empire exhibition of 1924. London: Longmans. pp 28

Menache, Philippe & Wolff, Helmut. 2021. die NG Kerk, ons erfenis : 'n fotoversameling van die argitektoniese skatte van 139 NG kerke in SA. Not identified: Not identified. pp 43

Picton-Seymour, Désirée. 1989. Historical Buildings in South Africa. Cape Town: Struikhof Publishers. pp 178