Considerable discussion took place on Wednesday 24th October 1936, at the Fifth Lanark District Council (Blantyre and East Kilbride), whether or not the council should take over the children’s playground with its amusements, offered by the Blantyre Miners’ Welfare Committee (at the ground in Victoria Street, opposite the medical centre). It was proposed the play park should be conveyed to the council as a gift, including the cost of transference fees. County Councillor Edward Daly, who presided, asked the council to consider the gift as one of utility and pleasure to large number of children. On a vote, three voted for acceptance and three for rejection. Mr Daly gave his casting vote in favour of acceptance and the Miner’s Welfare graciously handed over the playpark and land to the council for permanent safe keeping and maintenance. Three members did not vote.
The land in question is shown to the left of this photograph, taken a few years earlier than the Welfare’s decision. The play park was maintained for several decades but as I’m sure many Blantyre people will know, it’s now closed, the play things removed. The land currently sits vacant, prime for development. It makes me feel quite sad that the Miners Welfare voluntary gave up their land for Blantyre’s children and that the price of progress has ultimately meant children are not benefiting for many years now. I can’t help but feel the three councillors who voted no and to let the Welfare maintain it, were probably right in doing so.