Another Broompark Quoiting Ground?

1908 Quoiting team at Causeystanes

1908 Quoiting team at Causeystanes

I recently wrote about a Quoiting Club opening up on the Quoiting ground at Broompark in 1932. However, another club opened perhaps at that location, quite some time earlier. As such, there may have been another Quoiting Ground in High Blantyre. The Sunday Post, dated 16th February 1919, says, “QUOITING. A new club is being formed at High Blantyre, and will be opened for the 18 yards game in March. Look out for the talent. Keep me advised, Mr Paterson.”

When Gordon Cook pointed this out to me, I immediately thought of the old photos Alex Bowie shared here last year. The 1932 High Blantyre Quoiting club took over from Auchentibber when it closed a few years earlier. Could this 1919 club be the Broompark Quoiting club, which featured professional matches in local papers in the 1920s? Another way to look at this report, is that it does say “A New club is to be formed at High Blantyre”, i.e a club, not the quoiting ground itself. Quoiting may have been going on at that location at Broompark for some time before the formation of the new club, perhaps in a reduced or more relaxed, recreational capacity? A small field is certainly on 1896 and 1910 maps, strangely tucked between many buildings. Just a thought. With quoiting ground likely quite easy to be made, there may have been more than we will ever know. One thing is for certain, there is more to investigate with the story of Quoiting in Blantyre.
Alex Rochead, Gordon and I also recently discussed the type of quoiting matches being held. Wondering if the 18 yard game was a standard form for matches, Gordon replied, “I have some memoirs of an old miner who says that the lengths were 10, 15, and 21 yards. If they played the 10 yards game that was called pitching, whereas if they played the 15 or 21 yards game, that was throwing. I think the 18 yard length was popular in these parts. I doubt if the ten yard game was played much around here. Apparently a slightly built good player could throw the quoits better and further than a muscular big man who didn’t know the right technique.”
On social media:
  • Catherine McLachlan Never heard of this quoting. What is it?
  • The Blantyre Project The sport of quoiting (pronounced “koiting” or “kiting”) was popular in mining communities throughout Scotland between 1900 and 1940 or so. At one time there were about 30 quoiting clubs in Lanarkshire and the game was at its most popular between World War I and WorldWarII. Quoits are rarely played today and there are only a few clubs left in Scotland.

    Quoiting required a great deal of skill and strength as it involved throwing heavy iron or steel rings (weighing between 6 and 12 pounds or 2.7 to 5.5kg ) a pin in in the ground. The Scottish game used to be played by throwing the quoit a distance of 21 yards (about 19 metres) but the shorter distance of 18 yards (about 16.5 metres) was sometimes played.

    A game is played by 2 people each throwing 2 quoits at a 3 foot (almost 1 metre) square bed of clay or turf. The players then change ends and throw their quoits at the opposite end. The player whose quoit is nearest the pin wins that end, scoring 2 points if both their quoits are nearest the pin or, otherwise, just one point. The game is won by the first player tor each score limit of 21, 51, 61, 71 or 81, the limit being agreed prior to the start of the match. Blantyre’s quoiting game was best known at Auchentibber , the team there winning the Scottish Championships in 1928.

    Well done Catherine! I actually used my own “definitive Blantyre” book draft to look up your answer, the first time i have done so for anybody!

Leave a Reply