Stonefield Public Park

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Blantyre, Lanarkshire, Scotland

Blantyre history

Stonefield Public Park

Another bite sized chunk of Blantyre History

After you pass the “DOOKIT” on the same side of the road there was a chemist store and then a newsagents store which was one of the places that sold our comics, the Dandy, Beano, Hotspur etc.  Glasgow Road looking East
 Andrew Little's Shop Next door was Little’s the bakers. This baker was again one of the places that sold the morning rolls just like Black’s did back at Forrest Street. There is no doubt that there was a difference in taste between the two rolls, so both bakeries were frequented by people and families with a particular taste for that roll. This may sound strange but there were people who would walk from one end of the town to the other just to have that roll for their breakfast in the morning, Our family’s preference was for the Little’s rolls. We also felt in our family that Little’s made better cakes and scones and overall was a better baker. Again just our preference.

After Little’s the bakers there was a paint and wallpaper store owned by Paterson’s the painters. One of my younger brothers worked for them as a painter. At that time you had to serve four years as an apprentice, and as soon as you had became a Tradesman which would be around the age of 18 years, the government would conscript (National Service) you into the army for 18 months. Because of the Korean War, Mr Atlee came along and put an extra 6 months on the conscription. This happened to most young men from 1949 up until 1960. The only exceptions were Coal Miners, Farmers, and Merchant Navy, but you had to do 8 years in either one of these professions before you were excused.

This was another reason why a lot of young men shortly after the war emigrated. Some even went down the Coal Mines to try and miss going into the forces and regretted doing so. Now! here was their fathers, they had tried very hard to make sure that their sons did not go through the humiliations of life that they had experienced and here was the government enforcing on their sons a ultimatum which the sons in their 18 year old worldly ignorance were forced to make a choice on, it was this or that, no in between’s. Now there may have been smarter young men at 18 years than I was growing up around me in Blantyre and if there were they probably had brains enough to get out of the British Isles before the government caught up with them, I was just one of those dozy kids who did not know his A#*e from his elbow, but what I did know from my dad was that I was not going down any Coal Mine, so the Army was my sort of choice, with a lot of help from the government, or else. No regrets on my part even after all these years, and I am sure there were a lot like myself who received an education into a lot of different facets of life while doing their stint in the forces.

Paterson’s store finished on the corner of the building and from there a dirt and cobbled stone road ran down into the Public Park. The public park is now running from the middle of John Street — on past Alpine Street —- past the cobble road just mentioned and on to finish close to the monument, within a rose garden, dedicated to Dr Cowan-Wilson.  Stonefield Public Park Entrance
 Public Park The Monument is situated on the right-hand side of Glasgow road going north up the incline towards Station Road. The monument is an archway design and was situated within the rose garden at the main entrance into Blantyre Public Park. But it is now in my opinion, just hanging around in its present situation. MY!!. MY!!. What have they done to Blantyre.!!

Have a wonderful XMAS Margaret. Talk to you in the New Year!!
Regards to you


Continuing the conversation between Thomas Dunsmuir Hartman in Chicago (known as TDH or Drapadew) and originally from Logan Street, Blantyre and Margaret in Queensland Australia on TalkingScot.


Your Social Comments:

Len Northfield: Glasgow Road was great before they demolished it and built in the park here. In my opinion, it ripped the heart out of the town.

Elizabeth O’Brien: Doesn’t it look good? Looks much better than it does now.

Lynn Kelly: Remember the Park well I used to pass through it going to my granny’s house in John Street. I always picked a bunch of flowers for her, xx

Sadie Dolan: Great Pic!

Yvonne Watson: Looks soooo much better here than it does now!

Ann Crossar: I loved our fab park when I was wee – there was loads to do – putting, boating pond, paddling pool as well as swing park. Soo loved our park – wish we had that now! X

Len Northfield: My uncle, Bill McKillop, was responsible for all the parks, and he did a bloody good job.

Jim Caullay: Just thru the arch were stones you could make a wish on……, so my gran said & I believe her. :-))

Michael Docherty: Now its a dog’s toilet.

Stuart Oneil: Cracking pic.

Fran Mcdermott Walters: looks lovely x

Marc Moran: I remember that arch way and also how nice the park used to be “The Big Lounge” on a Friday an Saturday night’

The Only Way Is Blantyre: Bring back the Gala days!

Ann Ferguson: I remember this so well, walked through the park most days going to school.

Bette Conner Houghton: my dad worked in the park

Sheona Thomson Brennan: I remember it looking like this in the late 70’s… why and who is responsible for the state it is in now… can they try not get some of that glory back… though suppose you can’t just go knocking houses down nowadays!

Mary Meekat: I remember the arch too, oh stop your making me homesick, it’s a great photo by the way.

Margaret Barnes: Loved the park, my granny lived on Glasgow rd backing onto the park spent many hours playing there.

Caroline Lee: No gates or railings were they removed during the war. In the sixties u had flowers rose beds etc and bushes were shaped. Now grass a mess no flowers bushes cut in a square shape, why? Have u ever seen a square bush! Then weeds dog mess, litter.

Robert Henderson: I used to play on the putting green and used to swim in the pond.

Annie Murdoch Anderson Black: I remember this so so well, I spent many a summer in there with the wee paddling pool and my pieces in jam, a bottle of water and have great memories, thanks for this xxx

Marc Moran: Saturday night after the YMCA disco with yir girlfriend LOL

Caroline Lee @ Len: the park was there way before Glasgow road was demolished it was Asda who ripped the heart out of Glasgow road… Worst thing to happen to Blantyre, and who would rather have empty units than reduce rent!

Stewart Willis: My gran had the fruit shop at the top of the road next to the paper shop, spent nearly every saturday as a child either in the shop or in the park. Putting green, boats, pond, swings, happy days. now its a complete mess in comparison.

Marc Moran: I think I remember those stones or someone telling me about them.

Eileen Clark: Just like I remember when I used to take a shortcut to school every morning to get to Nesses School. Great memories they were.

Carolyn Patterson: I’m sure it was like that when I was young, that’s how I remember it !! same as @Stewart Willis done all the same stuff high park and the low park boats swings pond everything great summer memories (1963/4/)Nee (Whyte)

Sandra Mckeown: Loved this photo we used to get chased by the parkie if he thought you were dawdling from school. Lol Xxxx

Saxonrose Law: The wee guy at the front looks like he needs a pee x

Alan Baird: surly no he’s just passed by a public lavatory.

Gord Fotheringham: This is the way the park always was… why did it decline… someone should ask their M.P… This parkland was never to be sold… get after your M.P.s

John Fallon Jnr: As I’ve said on this site before the local councillors let the people of Blantyre down, look at our public park, Greenhall and Kirkton park they should hold there head in shame !!!

Eleanor Duncan Nailon: Remember it so clearly lol. It really was a beautiful park. used 2 love going on the boats. number 8 come in .lol xxx

Sharon Kerrigan: This is how I remember the park… in the good old days.

Liz Allan: The local councillors did let us down and are still letting us down. I do remember the park this way the massive slide the small paddling pool and the horse it was a great park but no longer. The same as Blantyre, deteriorating.

Tom McGuigan: It was ASDA that started Blantyre’s demise.

Liz Allan: There was a bus stop almost where that person is standing.

Christine Robertson: All the kids used to go there after their first Holy Communion and get their Picture taken under the arch and all the flowers were in bloom. It’s a shame it can’t be reverted back to its former glory.

Willie Rouse: dae ya mean its aw changed noo? we left Blantyre to come to Ozralia in 69.

Jane Dunleavy: Park was always gorgeous and that end had beautiful flowers but all parks had wardens then to ensure they weren’t vandalised.

Janice Clarkin: Yes played in it when it looked like that ha ha giving my age away now.

Christine Hynds: thats when it looked like a public park its ugly now.

Mary Davies: Oh!!! I remember it, must be getting old, lol

Michelle Brankin: I do, black n white b4 my time. Remember park when the good summers n the boats would be out. My dad lived In village.

Denis Kane-Priest: Yes, I can.

Jeanette Allardyce Ward: I do, it was lovely. All the brides went there to get their wedding photos taken. It has been totally ruined along with Blantyre’s main street.

Patrick Gaughan: I Walked through Blantyre main street today, hard to believe the park used to look like this, then when I passed asda I couldn’t help but think, if you let your house go into the state Asda has made Blantyre main street, the council would evict you, why don’t they make Asda tidy up the run down empty shops or demolish them.

John Fallon Jnr: Here here Patrick, we must make a stand against the local councillors, they’re still railroading us !!

Wendy Dalgleish: That is a superb pic ! xxx

Mary Davies: When small we had oor picnics here, jam pieces n bottles o’ water, good ol days, lol

Gord Fotheringham: The last thing I heard about this Hugh Park was there are houses built on it?? After the Stewarts building was demolished in the village?? whammy,,, they took the play park away?? all there is, is houses. Not really for me to Judge the M.P.s but what happened here?? did the villagers vote on selling this play park??

Liz Allan: No as usual the councillors made that decision without asking the people who the park was supposed to belong to. The people of Blantyre.

Liz O’Neill: God that makes me feel old.

Les Rose: Oh yes I can! In fact that’s me walking up the path in the flat cap!!

Elizabeth Cardoo: About half way down the path on the left was what we called Auld Mans Rest, it was a shelter with bench seats, and yes the auld yins would sit there and have a smoke of their pipe and a rest. Remember my sister and friends eating pods from a tree in the park,got violently ill, was laburnum seeds, lucky they didn’t kill themselves.

Bobby Dunsmuir: I can remember, the gardens were well maintained.

Jim Brankin: They were always well kept and you were not allowed to walk on grass.

Jimmy Hislop: I think a Mr Crow was the Park keeper here when I was a lad.


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