1955 Aerial Photos of the Timber Houses

These 4 photos were taken in 1955 from the nearby Auchinraith Bing and feature the timber houses. Streets pictured include Birdsfield Drive and Bellsfield Drive, named after the 2 local farms, bought over by compulsory purchase order, to make room for new housing estates. This followed a shortage of homes in Blantyre that existed from the 1930s.

The Timber houses were approved in June 1938 and commenced construction right after, initially to be completed by 1938. However, construction delays and problems with squatters meant residents didn’t take up their homes until 1939. Each time I think of this, I can’t help but imagine that only another year elapsed, the timber houses likely wouldn’t have been built at this time, due to the outbreak of World War 2. The council had approved 512 new homes throughout Lanarkshire built of this revolutionary new design, of which this Blantyre estate was to receive 50.

The houses in these pictures were only 16 years old. Well kept, in good condition, just as they are today, standing the test of time. At this time, Birdsfield Drive connected Auchinraith Road directly out on to Main Street and was not closed off at the end. In these photos, a bike is parked outside one home, people work away in the gardens, a few Anderson shelters are visible in the back gardens and a group of children congregate at the corner of the street.

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Elizabeth Kennedy Brilliant photos! I used to live at 7 Birdsfield Drive. Fantastic big houses with good sized gardens but when I lived there no central heating. (This was in the 1980s so not that long ago!) Will never forget the ice on the inside of the windows in the winter!

Marion Anderson Knew this area well, in the late ’50’s….some of my pals lived in the Timber Houses…we used to play ” up the bing” all the time, even make cubby houses….how dangerous was that!

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  1. Janette Henderson( born Forster) adopted Loudon married henderson

    My aunt Sarah n Uncle Harry Johnston stayed at 131 auchinraith rd with my 2 cousins William n Jim (JAZ) Johnston I used to stay there w/ends n school holidays Loved it I was born in 49 auchinraith rd in 1946 moved to EK in 1948 My parents were Jen Campbell Forster and Norman Forster who both died

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