Craighead Sports Ground

Blantyre, Lanarkshire, ScotlandGlasgow Road North

Craighead Sports Ground

Craighead Sports Ground

An aerial photo from 1955 looking down on Craighead Greyhound Racing track, later to become Blantyre Speedway. The Dog Track was owned and operated by Frank Doonin, who bought the area and a house in Auchinraith Road in 1925 for a sum of £300. Originally used for Whippet racing, it also accommodated open air Boxing events. Mr. Doonin was a pioneer in introducing greyhound racing to Scotland in late 20s. The track was widened and upgraded to accommodate five to six thousand spectators in 1965. The last greyhound meeting was April 82.

 

 Jimmy Beaton  Jimmy Beaton, born in Blantyre, 1st January 1927, was a director and promoter for the Glasgow Tigers Speedway stars at Blantyre Greyhound Stadium 1977-81 and then Blantyre Craighead Park 1982-86.

 

This photo of the dog track was taken on opening night of the speedway in July 1977.Speedway ran there 1977-81.

In 1977, through Jimmy Beaton, Frank Doonin introduced Speedway to the venue. This photo of the Speedway was taken on opening night in July 1977. Speedway ran there 1977-82 and closed due to building of the EK expressway. The last speedway meeting was on 18th October 1981 Tigers versus Bobby Beaton’s Buccaneers.

The Speedway was home to Blantyre Tigers who gave us two local heroes, Scotland’s greatest ever Speedway rider, Ken McKinlay 1928-2003 known as “Hurri-Ken” and Tommy Miller, “Atomic Tommy” who had a somewhat meteoric rise to stardom in 1950. Speedway was staged at the Greyhound Stadium as the home of the Glasgow Tigers in the late 1970s / early 1980s before the new road build forced a move to Craighead Park which was closed down at the end of the 1986 season.

Craighead Park, home of Blantyre Celtic F.C.

 

 

Craighead Park, home of Blantyre Celtic F.C. from 1919, to the end of the 1986 season, when they went out of existence.

 

 

Blantyre, Lanarkshire, Scotland

 

Your Comments:

Stewart Campbell: Went to speedway back in 1982.

Evelyn Graham Shaw: We used to walk from Whitehill through the ‘bing’ out to speedway.

Shug McNeill: Remember jumping wall and sneaking in to speedway.

David Thomson: Used to love the smell of the red ash when the speedway was on , could smell it all over tyre, used to jump the wall to get in, the broken glass bottles that were cemented on top of the wall didn’t deter us Springwell lads lol.

Michael Mogan: As a Coventry kid and a Coventry bees fan, I am also the son of two Blantyre natives (Tommy Mogan and Margaret McInally) and we used to come to Blantyre often. Going to the speedway was great up your way and gave me a way to support a team that related to my folks and my roots! Thanks for sharing.

George Mackenzie: This must have contributed to Blantyre’s Ken McKinlay becoming World Champion?

Elizabeth Dobson Grieve: Loved going to the dog track with my dad.

Mary McGuigan: Remember trying to climb over wall was hard way broken bottles stuck into brick lol x

Liz Ali Ali: Oh great I loved that smell from the speed way.

If you have any Photos… Send them to Bill

Blantyre, Lanarkshire, Scotland

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