Blantyre Industrial Estate was the third of seven massive Industrial Estates opened in 1946, destined to overturn unemployment and bring post war prosperity back to Scotland.
Blantyre’s Industrial Estate was opened on Monday 25th March 1946 by Mr Tom Fraser, joint Under Secretary for Scotland. Spread over a massive 42 acres and using some land bought by compulsory purchase order, the buildings were created to employ up to 5,000 people, around a third of Blantyre at the time!
Unemployment was a problem. Just 2 decades earlier, there were 12 collieries in the area and in 1946, only 1 was still operating. At the time of opening, 2 companies had secured premises with firm enquiries for up to another 60,000 square feet. Mr Fraser spoke of the need to diversify industry in the area away from a declining coal mining operation. He added there were 12,000 unemployed in Lanarkshire at the time, 5,500 of whom were men.
There is no doubt that the estate brought employment and jobs to Blantyre, as it still does today. However, the ageing estate is starting to show signs of age and several of the buildings have recently been renovated.