London Teachers’ College

1201 Western Road, London, ON.

Known since 1975 as Elborn College, the building was designed for the training of elementary teachers as a replacement for London Normal School (Francis Heakes, 1899).  The building is associated with the professionalization of teaching in Ontario.  Affiliated with the University of Western Ontario, the facility was designed by Peter Dickinson for the Toronto firm of Page & Steele.

The building is sited on a street corner opposite, at that time, the campus of University of Western Ontario.  It is a low-slung assembly of volumes set within a park-like landscape.  Within Dickinson’s body of work, London Teachers’ College is noteworthy for its respect for the university’s architectural legacy of earlier 20th century buildings in a Collegiate Gothic style.  Modern in its planning, spatial qualities, and building technology (e.g. concrete and terrazzo), it is the stone cladding that resonates with the earlier buildings on the nearby campus.  The London building is a striking contrast to the more exuberant, playful modernism of Dickinson’s design for Toronto Teachers’ College, completed two years earlier.

In 1973, London Teachers’ College merged with Althouse College to form the Faculty of Education at the University.  The building was dedicated to Dr. Harold E. Elborn (1903-1968) who was a school principal, inspector, and eventually Deputy Minister of Education from 1961 to 1965.

There have been several additions, mainly at the rear (west side) of the building.