The Pearce Institute at Govan Cross was designed by Sir Robert Rowand Anderson in the style of a very large 17th century Scottish townhouse. It was commissioned to be built by Lady Dinah Pearce in memory of her husband Sir William Pearce, MP of the Fairfield Shipyard, who died in 1888. Work took place from 1902 and was completed in 1906.
The Institute was intended as a social centre for the community and offered Govanites a men’s and women’s reading rooms and clubs, a library, a gymnasium, cooking and laundry departments, and a retiring room. In addition, the organ, stage and gallery in the McLeod Hall made it a popular venue for dances and social gatherings. On the wall at the entrance to the building is the greeting: