During January 1934, a neighbours dispute in High Blantyre escalated to ridiculous proportions.
Mr Alexander Gillespie of 3 Welsh Drive, Blantyre ended up in court, accused of harassing his neighbour also called Gillespie, using the most ingenious and incredible method.
For whatever reason, the two men had grudges against the other. They decided to take it out on each other, through the property boundaries, their fighting and quarreling quickly evolving into more elaborate methods of harassing each other.
Alexander lived below, his neighbour on top and it was Alexander who ended up with a clever means to ensure his neighbour upstairs ended up with no sleep.
He attached a rope to an iron bedstead in his neighbours’ spare bedroom, carefully hiding it from sight and drilled through the floor into his own property.
Then, in his own bedroom below, he pulled through the rope down towards him and attached an iron rod that he could hold on to. In the dead of night, he would pull the rod, from the comfort of his own bed, the rope would tighten and the iron bed upstairs would rattle.
This greatly annoyed the neighbour upstairs who could not fathom where the noise would come from. Alexander would listen for the footsteps into the room and cease pulling the rod. The noise would stop just as the neighbour walked into his own spare, unoccupied bedroom. This eventually caused considerable alarm to the complainer’s wife and two children, quite frightened by the incident.
Eventually, after a few weeks, Alexander was rumbled and it is recorded that the exchange of profanities could be heard at the other end of the street, forcing others to call the police. So it came to be that at the end of January 1934, the judge prosecuted both men, asking for them to make up their differences amicably.
From “Blantyre Explained” by Paul Veverka (c) 2016
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