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Tour Gorbals, Glasgow, Scotland

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

This morning with temperature well below zero but blue skies and bright sunshine I went of for a stroll around the Gorbals area of Glasgow. Back in the 18th and early 19th century the Gorbals was a relatively posh (High End) part of Glasgow but subsequently slid down the socio-economic scale to become, by the 1950s, a byword across the U.K. for social deprivation and poor housing. Whilst today, the average income in the area is probably below the national average, the tenor of the place as manifested in buildings, architecture and facilities has been transformed to the extent that a visitor from Mars might scratch his/her head and wonder why the Gorbals name has such a bad aura.

Here is an image of the Caledonia Road Church which was designed by Alexander 'Greek' Thomson , a brilliant Victorian era architect who has left a huge legacy of his work around Glasgow. Unfortunately, the church was burned by vandals in the 1960s but news was recently announced of plans to use the remaining shell as heart of a new Greek Thomson Visitor Centre, a development which, in my view is excellent news and should prove a fillip for the area. In fact, I have recently set up a new Greek Thomson page on my website.

This is a view of the Gorbals Rose Garden which is also the only public orchard in Scotland.

Great colour scheme for these apartments.

Interesting street art. This is called the 'Gorbals Boys' by Liz Pedes of Gorbals Arts Project. The statues are named Joe, Nicky and Lee.

This is an unnamed statue. Appears to be a Victorian era boy who is off to sea.

More interesting design
Here is some more impressive modern architecture.

Interesting design feature outside a residential block.

Back to real world! Here is an image of 'gritty' Gorbals. A workshop under a defunct railway line.

Defunct railway station. Wonder why the City Fathers don't try and make use of the closed rail line which runs above the streets? Sell it off to the private sector as a toll road and relieve traffic congestion?

When I get some more time later in the year I plan to research the architecture and set up a dedicated web page for the Gorbals area. One heck of a brand name coupled with history and modern design.

Upon returning to base I was able to finalise two new small group tour bookings. Its nice to see the enquiries coming in from around the world.

On the Glasgow Ancestry side, continued with another tranche of names from the Barrhead War Memorial.


posted by Catswhiskers @ 9:55 AM  0 comments


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Rose Garden Gorbals Glasgow Scotland

Sunday, January 25, 2009

This evening, I am posting a short video clip of my visit to the Rose Garden at Gorbals. This is an unusual place and in fact is a small park in the centre of the re-developed Gorbals residential area.

It would appear that the Rose Garden was a former churchyard and/or cemetery. Around the walls of the Garden can be found tombstones and grave-markers to the deceased dating back to the 18th and early 19th centuries when the Gorbals was an upscale residential location.

The Gorbals is a fascinating area presenting a combination of heritage properties ( e.g.Caledonia Road Church) and modern architecture all just a mile or so from Glasgow City.



posted by Catswhiskers @ 4:29 PM  0 comments


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Gorbals Glasgow Scotland

Saturday, January 24, 2009

This morning, with clear skies, I went down to the Gorbals area, south of Glasgow city. Historically, this was an area of extreme social deprivation but with benefit of new housing and many other facilities (aided by some exciting architecture) the area has been transformed. The short videos below were taken in the central, shopping area of the Gorbals.

video video


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Tour Gorbals Pubs Glasgow Scotland

Saturday, December 27, 2008

This evening, I am presenting an image of one of the Gorbals' best known pubs, the Brazen Head located in Cathcart Road near to the Caledonia Road Church.

This pub is patronised by supporters of Celtic FC, one of Scotland's top soccer clubs. No doubt much celebration here tonight, as earlier today, Celtic beat their arch rivals, Rangers 1-0.

The following two images show the entrance to 'Durty Nellies' bar. It would be interesting to learn the origin of this bar's name!


posted by Catswhiskers @ 12:00 PM  0 comments


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Glasgow Gorbals Architecture Tour Scotland

Friday, December 26, 2008

This morning I visited the Gorbals area of Glasgow to obtain images of grave markers for my separate ancestry blog. Because visibility was poor I was unable to obtain decent images of the surrounding buildings and architecture so I am presenting the images below which were taken just a few days ago.

Historically, the Gorbals has been a byword for social deprivation but during the 1960s and 1970s the slums were replaced by some very interesting modern buildings with attractive design.

Here is a very 'average' apartment block (social housing) which would appear to date from the 1960s.

This is more interesting and very recent. I like the subtle, contrasting colours.

Here is a tower block (possibly 1970s vintage) viewed through the avenue at the Southern Necropolis.

This attractive building can be found in the centre of the Gorbals.

This office block can be found on Caledonia Road.

Apartments on Caledonia Road

More residential architecture on Caledonia Road

I can arrange and provide architecture themed tours of Glasgow.


posted by Catswhiskers @ 9:46 AM  0 comments


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Tour Southern Necropolis Glasgow Scotland

Thursday, December 25, 2008

This evening, I am presenting some images of Glasgow's Southern Necropolis.

This is located close to the Gorbals area and is home to the last resting place of some 250,000 deceased in a space of some 21 acres.

The site was opened in 1840.

A fascinating pace with grave markers recording wealthy citizens of what was then an upscale area.

Winter view towards Hutchesontown and Glasgow City

View of the cemetery looking towards the Gorbals

Avenue of trees with view to the entrance and high rise block behind. Ancient and modern!

Formal entrance to cemetery. It is possible to drive a car through the entrance and around the site.

This site is a 'must' for visitors wishing to get an understanding of the people and history of the Gorbals and Hutchesontown.


posted by Catswhiskers @ 1:22 PM  0 comments


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Tour Glasgow Gorbals Scotland

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

This evening, I have finally been successful in uploading some images of my recent visit to the Gorbals district of Glasgow. Historically, the name 'Gorbals' has been synonymous with extreme social deprivation but the area has now been transformed, certainly in terms of its housing conditions for what remains a local income area.

Here is one of the few remaining old tenement ( apartment) buildings for which the Gorbals was notorious.

This is a street sculpture named the 'Gorbals Boys' by Liz Peden and dates from Aug 29th 2008. The statues are named Joe, Nicky and Lee.

This is the entrance to the Southern Necropolis which holds the remains of wealthy citizens dating form the 18th and 19th centuries when this part of Glasgow was considered 'upscale'. Some of the memorials have been vandalised, albeit in the past, which adds a somewhat eerie tone to the the place, especially in the evenings. Would make a good film set for a horror movie!

Here is an example of some modern architecture at the junction of Caledonia Road and Laurieston Road. I find this very impressive and stylish.

This is 'Greek' Thomson's Caledonia Road Church dating from 1856-7 and is a building of national importance. It was gutted by fire in 1965. Interestingly, Thomson is buried just a few hundred yards (meters) away in the Southern Necropolis.

Here is a street scene showing the pub with tower blocks (social housing) in the distance.

This is a former church on Pollockshaws Road which is now used as a hostel for the homeless.

Here is the Brazen Head Pub at 1-3 Cathcart Road. This is patronised by Celtic supporters.

More Gorbals images and comment tomorrow.


posted by Catswhiskers @ 2:57 AM  0 comments


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Tour Gorbals Parish Church Glasgow

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

This morning I undertook a tour of the Gorbals area of Glasgow, an area formerly notorious for poor housing and social problems. However, the area has since been transformed and now boast a very interesting selection of architecture.

I have lots of images to post, but regrettably, there seem to be technical problems with tonight as a function of which it has taken about 1 hour to get just one image posted.

This is of the Gorbals Parish Church (Church of Scotland) located at 5 Cumberland Street.

Hopefully, Google will allow me to post a wider selection of images tomorrow.


posted by Catswhiskers @ 1:32 PM  0 comments


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