Rachael Purse

Job Title:

Bringing Back the Mack PhD Candidate


School of Design


Working in the archives,
during the filming of a feature for STV about Glasgow philanthropist Isabella Elder

Working in the archives,


Rachael Purse

Bringing Back the Mack: The Recovery and Restoration of the Mackintosh Building at the Glasgow School of Art.

Supervisor: Robyne Calvert

In May 2016 was lucky enough to be successful in my application for The Glasgow School of Art 'Bringing Back the Mack' PhD Scholarship, funded by the GSA and Historic Environment Scotland. I will be recording and providing critical reflection on the restoration process, as well as the changing use of space within the building and contemporary conservation practices and ethics. It is a real privilege to be able to contribute to this vast project in real-time, working alongside such a skilled multi-disciplinary team.

I originally studied for my undergrad in History, with a focus on the Medieval and Early Modern, at the University of Glasgow, and went on to attain my Museum Studies Masters the following year where I specialized in dress history and textile conservation. I worked for Glasgow City Heritage Trust for two years prior to becoming a PhD candidate, and had various roles within this small organization, which enabled me to learn a great deal about the built environment, conservation, and even conference organisation and event management.