Thank you to Lisa Whyte who contacted me recently with some further information about my home, Croftfoot in High Blantyre. Lisa told me that her fathers family used to live there in the 1950s and 60s. The photograph looks like 1960 or so. Her dad, John Whyte kindly wrote some words about his time living there saying, “When I lived a Croftfoot house it was split between two families. As you look at the front, my family lived on the left side and Caroline’s family lived on the right. Caroline’s father Joe was my fathers brother. Caroline is my cousin. Both my parents died long ago and I know Joe also died. I presume my Aunt Jean (Caroline’s mother) is probably dead. We have lost touch over the years. When you entered the drive from the main street, there was a row of police houses on the right, on the left the house was owned by a chap called Matt Boyle who owned a couple of pubs in Blantyre. As you moved down the drive on either side were some small trees, then much larger ones. To the right was my fathers field and, and farther on was Joe’s.
My father was a very keen gardener. In the field were rows of strawberry plants, black and red currant bushes, raspberries, gooseberry’s, rhubarb, potatoes and other veg. The fruit was used to make jams. When you turned the bend in the drive and the house came into view, on the right was a path leading to the field, next to it was a large shared greenhouse, you can just make it out in the picture. On the left was a grassed area used for hanging out washing. The left hand first building was a garage, a smaller building next door was used as a coal shed by both families.
During spring and summer the back garden was full of flowers, tulips, poppy’s, daffodils and many others. Also the park beyond the garden was kept in wonderful condition by two park keepers. Various shapes were cut into the grass that were full of flowers of all colours and the smell of flowers was terrific.
The well at the bottom of the garden (Kennings Well) used to have a metal railing around it. You had to walk down about 6 steps to reach it. At the bottom you had to turn to the right to view the well. It was a brick circular shape and i could walk inside. It was about 5 feet in diameter and about 1 foot deep. The reason it was so shallow is because my mother threw lots of stones into it in case any of us fell in.
The fireplace in my parents bedroom could be moved to allow a person to go in behind it. I was told this was a priest hole. My father sealed it in case we injured ourselves. Living at Croftfoot House was wonderful. No child could ask for anything better.
I hope you’ll be very happy there. Good luck with the renovation and your book.