Springwell area of Blantyre got it’s name from a large and prominent house that stood alone and isolated on the Glasgow Road at it’s junction with Auchinraith Road. Springwell House was built in the late 1700’s and sadly was demolished before the advent of any camera. There are no known sketches of it either.
An 1859 account states “Springwell is a dwelling house in an angle formed by the Parish Road joining the Hamilton and Glasgow Turn Pike Road.” This was a time before coal industry. It was rural, sleepy and without any great pollution. There were no rows nearby at that time, nor any sign of housing estates. It WAS the birth of Springwell as an area and very much the heart of this area’s history.
The house existed until the 1860’s although the exact date of it’s demolition is not known. The location was important. It is not shown on 1880’s maps, which is logical with the creation of all the Glasgow Road tenements, shops and businesses really took off in earnest. Auchinraith Road was (and still is) one of the longest roads in Blantyre linking High to Low Blantyre. This house had two wells in the vicinity offering fresh water. A small barn was attached to the house which was cited on a triangular piece of land, with a path leading to the purest of the two wells. Fields surrounded this house in all directions with a trees bordering on the lands of Craighead (where the carwash is now).
With the creation of a commerce district here in the 1880s and 1890’s, the boundary at the back of Springwell House eventually became Herbertson Street. Interestingly, people forget that Auchinraith Road doesn’t actually exit on to Glasgow Road anymore. The bottom part of Auchinraith Road was re-aligned (rather sharply if you drive it today!). The site of Springwell House is now occupied by Gavin Watson Printers (formerly Reid Printers). The bottom part of the old Auchinraith Road would now be in their modern carpark.