Records of Victoria Agency Ltd, civil engineering contractors, London, England

Scope and Content

  • Register of members and share holders 1907
  • Nominal ledger 1925-1940
  • Balance sheets 1912-1931

Administrative / Biographical History

In 1906  , Malcolm McAlpine, a partner in the firm Robert McAlpine & Sons , civil engineering contractors, Clydebank, West Dunbartonshire, Scotland, managed the Irish side of the family business. However, he was restless and hankered after a position in the business that would offer him greater responsibility and new challenges. In 1906, he presented his father and brothers with a proposal that the firm establish a London office with him in charge as the company was little known in England. If McAlpine could establish a reputation in London, it would gain acceptance on tender lists for valuable contracts in the south. The other partners were willing to give the venture a try but realised that it involved a heavy risk of failure. Malcolm was given 2 years to establish the London office on the understanding that if the firm lost over £30,000 on its southern operations then the office would close and the project abandoned.

In 1907  , the Victoria Agency Ltd , a limited liability company, was established in London to handle the London side of the business with Malcolm in charge. The company had a share capital of £5,000 divided between the partners of the firm and the Victoria Agency's office manager, Lawrence Weaver. Malcolm joined St Stephen's Gentleman's Club in London, a club popular with architects and engineers, as a means of establishing the firm's reputation. The company one its first contract, valued at £34,500, in August 1907  to build a wharf at Rushenden, Kent, England. It won 2 more contracts there and, at the end of 1908  , the company won its biggest contract at £150,000 for the Island Barn Reservoir at East Molesey, Surrey, England, for the Metropolitan Water Board.

The Victoria Agency continued to trade until the 1940s  , although the main London and southern trade of the company was handled by Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons (London) Ltd from 1926  .


The material has been arranged into series as shown in the scope and content. Within series, items are generally arranged chronologically.

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Deposit : Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons Ltd : 1985

Other Finding Aids

Digital and manual file level lists of the surviving records of Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons Ltd, subsidiaries and related companies are available in the searchroom ref: UGD 254

Manual file level list available at the National Registers of Archives in Edinburgh (NRA(S) 3111) and London (NRA32523)

Alternative Form Available

No known copies

Conditions Governing Use

Applications for permission to quote should be sent to the University Archivist

Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use & condition of documents

Appraisal Information

This material has been appraised in line with standard GB 248 procedures

Custodial History

Held by Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons Ltd, Kettering. Transferred to Glasgow University Archive Services in 1985 during the preparation of the company history.


None expected

Related Material

The records of the following Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons companies are held by Glasgow University Archive Services:

GB 248 UGD 254/1 Records of Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons Ltd

GB 248 UGD 254/2 Records of Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons (London) Ltd

GB 248 UGD 254/3/1 Records of Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons (Scotland) Ltd

GB 248 UGD 254/3/2 Records of Sir Robert McAlpine Properties (Scotland) Ltd

GB 248 UGD 254/4 Records of Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons (Midlands) Ltd

GB 248 UGD 254/5 Records of Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) Ltd

GB 248 UGD 254/6 Records of Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons (Ireland) Ltd

GB 248 UGD 254/7 Records of Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons (Birmingham) Ltd

GB 248 UGD 254/10 Records of Dorchester House Hotel

GB 248 UGD 254/11 Records of Victoria Agency Ltd

GB 248 UGD 254/18 Records of McAlpine Ferro-Concrete Co Ltd

Material in other repositories: no material associated by provenance


No known publications using this material

Additional Information

This material is original

Compiled by David Powell, Hub Project Archivist, January 2003

No alterations made to date

Geographical Names