Bairds Store – was a former double storey isolated building situated on a grass field between Bairds Rows and Glasgow Road. It had 3 large upper windows and 3 lower windows on both the north and south sides, and a stone staircase on the west side, below a tall chimney, accessed the upper floor. It dates back to a time before 1859 and was once the southern lodge house for Craighead. In the 1840’ when the Hamilton – Glasgow Railway was built, the railway cut off and isolated the lodge house from nearby Craighead, forcing the owners to create a new entrance off Whitleberry Road. This is demonstrated well on the 1859 map of Blantyre.
In 1878 William Baird constructed nearby Bairds Rows (Criaghead Rows), which were tied miner’s homes to the colliery. This is the likely time of his acquisition of the little building, which may have been used even then as a store and a home for staff.
It may be the possible store spoken off during accounts of the 1887 Blantyre Riots. There were rumours that coffins were once stored in this building, but no evidence of this has yet been obtained and is co-incidental with the Caldwell (Coffin Hall) directly across the Glasgow Road.
During the 1940’s, Bairds Rows residents knew the isolated building as “The Hoose in the Park”. The McGuire family from Baird’s rows moved into the room and kitchen above the storeroom in 1942. They had 4 of a family before moving out in 1948. The official address of the house and store was 68 Glasgow Road and should not be confused with 35 Bairds Row, which was a small storeroom for William Baird (coalmasters) amongst the terraced homes.
Baird’s Store looked out across Glasgow Road to Chalmers Building and Rosendale at Springwell. For the early part of the 20th Century, 2 large billboards sat alongside Glasgow Road, partially screening the store from pedestrians.
The little store was demolished sometime around 1959, along with many of the terraced homes to the north.
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