Blantyre's Ain Website

Blantyre, Lanarkshire, ScotlandGlasgow Road South


Rosendale, a three storey redsandstone building built in 1890. This picture was taken in the early 1970s after the Chalmers Building and Caldwell Hall were demolished.

The Auchinraith Club is at the far end of building and was a spit and sawdust “Men Only” Club, even the cleaners were all males. A well frequented place by the miners. Opposite on Glasgow Road you can see the entrance to the Horseshoe Bar known locally as ‘Kelly’s Corner’ after the owner, James Kelly, of Celtic F.C. fame.

Rosendale was quite an impressive-looking building as you entered Blantyre from the East. Most people remember it, this way and some even think that it was parallel with Glasgow Road. It was, however, mostly obscured from passing traffic on Glasgow Road by the Chalmers Building and the Caldwell Hall before they were demolished in 1959.

Rosendale and Fairground

Everyone in Blantyre had an occasion to visit Rosendale when the Shows (FUN FAIR) as we called it, came to the village. It was parked in a piece of the wasteland directly behind the Rosendale buildings, to the right of the photo.

Thomas Dunsmuir Hartman remembers, “Rosendale Place was the name given to a large 3 storey tenement type buildings with the first floor entrance from the Main Street. The other entrance for the other two stories was around the back of the building or with an attached tiered stairway, as a child when I originally saw this stairway at such an angle it was frightening. That stairway looked scary to me.”

The bottom of the photo is the Top and Middle Row of Baird’s Rows.


( A Magic Place When We Were Young )

Ah’ remember the tenement called Rosendale
in Blantir toon fae whence ah’ hail,
an ancient place, a bit o’ a dive,
but somehow magical, when yur only five.

Ah’ remember ma pals an’ thur cheeky wee faces,
thur wee short troosers held up wae braces.
Playin’ ootside was always a must:
Kickin’ a baw in the stoor an’ the dust.

Ah’ remember the outside toilet wae dread,
is it any wunner we peed the bed?
tae go doon there made me awfy unhappy,
thir wur times ah’ wished, ah’ still wore a nappy.

Ah’ remember the close wae hardly a light
the ghosts oan the stairs that gave ye a fright,
an gaun tae bed when the time wis just right,
tae wait fur the Daleks, that came in the night.

Ah’ remember ma da’ wae his jet black hair,
young an’ handsome an’ fu o’ flair,
a Blantir Dandy some wid say:
but a gentleman always, come what may.

Ah’ remember ma mother, a young Snow White,
always there tae make things right,
tender, lovin’ an’ fu o’ care,
wae a heart fu’ o’ love, for us tae share.

The family remembers those childhood days
in auld Rosendale in oor different ways,
an’ as we remember, happy or sad,
we’ll always be grateful, tae oor mum and dad.

Brian Cummiskey

Rosendale Watercolour

Just a wee note on my poem, ‘Rosendale’. It was the first poem I ever wrote. I wrote it for my father’s 70th birthday. It was he who said he has seen the ghost of an old woman on the stairs. The Daleks that came in the night were inspired by a life-size Dalek that sat in the Co-op window on Glasgow Road. I’m sure it was the Co-op, opposite the old post office.

The mither tongue gratefully added by Mr. James Cornfield.


Your Memories:

Hi Bill,

I lived in Rosendale as a nipper from 1948 to 1954. My mum, Cathie Callaghan (nee Fagan), was a teacher at St Joseph’s and my dad, Joe Callaghan, was a miner at Cardowan. They lived in Rosendale for some time before I was born on 7th May 1948.

We lived up several different closes, and I remember it as a very happy place with not much money but loads of community spirit. Everybody knew everybody and looked out for each other’s weans. We had plenty of freedom, and the only flies in the ointment were the Springies (Springwells kids) who used to invade across the railway line at the far end of Rosendale. This always resulted in a battle with stones (using the ballast off the railway) before we moved to close quarters with sticks and stuff. These battles regularly resulted in injuries to even small kids. I left when I was 6, by which time I’d already had my arm broken by a stick, and my head split by a stone. Happy days eh?

Andy Callaghan


Hello there Bill,

My name is Don Barkey. I remember living in Rosendale as a kid. I was 4yrs old then, and my little sister was born in May of 1968. This was my first memory of a child in Scotland. We moved to Hazelwood Drive in Blantyre for a short time then my dad and mum (Donald and Rose) with my little sister, and I moved out to Australia in 1972. I hope this brief piece of info has filled a small piece of the jigsaw.


Wee Donald

Rosendale residents Protest at County Buildings

Angry Protest: These furious residents from Rosendale Place in Blantyre went to the County Buildings in February of 1968 to protest against the delay in re-housing.

Mothers of young children complained that chimneys were ready to fall, there was no toilet in one close, rain was leaking into rooms, and a roof had a tarpaulin over it. Source: Hamilton Advertiser.

Sent in by Gerry Kelly

 Rosendale Protest


If you have any Photos… Send them to Bill

Blantyre, Lanarkshire, Scotland

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