1960’s Greencroft at Bardykes


Whilst visiting Kirk Care Home back in December, resident Tom Robertson gave me a copy of this fantastic photograph of a time when he lived at “Greencroft” at Bardykes Road.

At the time four families lived there including the Bowies, a family of florists who had a shop in Glasgow Road. Tom described how the Bowies would collect moss at the upper fields in Blantyre and at Douglas, in order to make wreaths. The bags of collected moss, he assures me are in the background of this photo. Headed by George Bowie, his family worked hard at their home at Greencroft, Bardykes Road amongst 5.5 acres of market gardens, producing flowers, produce and wreaths for cemeteries. They would travel to Douglas Moor to get the moss to make cemetery wreaths. The shop also doubled up as a Fruit and Veg shop and was well known in Blantyre throughout the 1950s and 1960s. A descendent of this shop went on to own Jilts Pub, in Hamilton.

Greencroft is not to be confused with more modern Greencroft Cottage (built in the 1930s, demolished 2003).  The name of the area at Greencroft may have been derived from the name “Girnelcroft” which appears as far back in Blantyre’s history as the 1600s.

From “Blantyre Explained” by Paul Veverka (c)

On social media:

Bill Napier Interesting Elsie, as you well know Grandad Chalmers lived there and I guess most of not all the brothers and sisters were brought up there too, and I probably lived there with my Mum after my Dad died.
Margaret Stewart I faintly remember Bowie’s land. But I clearly remember going to Mrs Bowie’s choir. Sometimes we went to her house to practice.
Margo Clayton That’s my mum. We lived in Glasgow Road. Our relatives lived in greencroft. She’s 92 now and in S trathaven.
Elizabeth Grant Greatrex Harris Fond memories of staying there with Granddad Chalmers Bill, helping to feed his pigeons and playing down at the Peck Brae x
Moyra Lindsay My mum worked in Bowies fruit shop in the thirties. It was then Mrs Youngs shop. Her niece Margaret took over she was Mrs Averrill . My mum and dad met there when she was fifteen, he delivered coal there. She earned at fourteen 7/6 a week. That is 37 pence today. Not nine till five either, but never heard her say a bad word about Mrs Young. Mrs Young lived at Arnott Cottage on Glasgow road and Margaret built the bungalow next to it. Tell Tom Robertson I used to do his mums hair.
Bill Napier Yes indeed Liz , long time ago but still fresh. Xx

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