From the Glasgow Herald, Friday 19th January 1877, Page 6. This was in the papers some 9 months before the Blantyre Pit Explosion.
“Last night, an indignation meeting of the inhabitants of Blantyre was held in the Free Church to take into consideration – First the disgraceful state of the roads and to adopt such means as will be most suitable to ensure a reform, second to receive information and consider as to how the poor and other rates are disposed of, third to adopt such measures as will effect a more uniform rate of assessment than at present exists, and fourth, to discuss the advisability of adopting the Lindsay Act, so that taxation may be fully represented.
There was good attendance, those present having had to traverse the sloughs and quagmires which exist on all the roads, and which in some places are from one to two feet deep! Great enthusiasm was evinced throughout, but the promoters had provided no programme and the proceedings were of a desultory and often grotesque character. Nearly half an hour was wasted before a chairman could be found. Ultimately Mr. Christopher Grimson took upon himself the duties. One speaker sought to throw on the contractor the blame for the existing state of the roads; others blamed the proprietors.
Mr. Blackwood, Greencroft, suggested that, as the collections of the Free Church had been lessened owing to people being prevented attending church by the state of the roads, they should be asked to sue the road trustees for the deficiency. Thus did not meet with favour. Mr. William Thomson, sanitary inspector, after saying several plain things anent local authority, moved a resolution expressing indignation at the conduct of the road trustees in allowing the roads to remaining their present disgraceful condition and pledging the meeting to take steps to adopt the Lindsay Police Act. Dr Grant proposed the appointment of a committee to draw up a series of resolutions and submit them for consideration at a future meeting. This was agreed to.”
Pictured is Bardykes Road in 1904 not far from Greencroft, which may give you an indication of why meetings were required to address the state of the roads, and remember, this photo is 27 years AFTER they were improved!
From “Blantyre Explained” by Paul Veverka (c)