In the 1791 “A Statistical Account of Blantyre” written by Rev Henry Stevenson, there is a comment about a Spring in Blantyre that was even visited as a tourist destination! Where from the description below could this be? The account had me puzzled as no particular Spring is currently famed today in Blantyre. I’ve previously written about Springs and a connection at Broompark, lending itself towards the name Springfield in the same area, but sometimes, i have to admit there is a more likely explanation and i may have been wrong. I’ve recently had pointed out that there is a Spring in Park, Auchentibber, which is a more likely explanation than the Springs at Broompark. Having witnessed the Spring for myself and been assured from Jim Brown who has witnessed it bubbling up to the surface, i am forced to conclude the 1791 account of the Spring is referring to Park, Auchentibber and not in Springfield. A reminder of the account is below.
Mineral Springs – There is a mineral spring in this parish, the water of which is frequently and successfully used, for sore eyes, scorbutic disorders, and a variety of other complaints. The water is sulphureous; it is very strongly impregnated, and is accounted the best of the kind in this part of the country. About fifty years ago (1740), it was the common summer resort of many families from Glasgow: but from the changes of fashion, so frequent in relation to such objects of medical regimen, it is now almost totally deserted.
Not 100% convinced as there was no location, i needed more. However, the above theory about Park is further supported when i dug a little deeper. In 1885 within the Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland, Francis H Groome wrote “A mineral spring at Park , strongly impregnated with sulphur held in solution by hydrogen, was much frequented by Glasgow families toward the middle of last century, and still is famed in scrofulous and scorbutic cases.”.
The Spring is situated just off the old Park Road on the left hand side of the track from Auchentibber monument to the old Limekiln. The track is on the left hand side of Sydes Brae, directly across from the War Memorial on the left hand side. Follow it along for a short time, then just after a change in direction at the fenceline, on the left is a tree stump that rises up out of the Spring itself. You can’t miss it! It’s not much to look at, but i do now think that this is the fabled tourist attraction Spring.
I have absolutely no hesitation to correct anything that is proved to be contrary to what i have written previously. It only shows the importance of ensuring all articled are adequately investigated and when assumption used, it is stated so.