In 1905 Thomas Baxter owned and lived in a house on Stonefield Road. It is on that valuation roll that we first hear of the Baxters being in Blantyre.
Sometime between 1905 and 1915, he moved into the world of retail. In 1915 Thomas Baxter owned 2 shops on Glasgow Road, one at 92 Glasgow Road which also had a stable and another at 186 Glasgow Road. In the 1920’s Thomas Baxter still owned this second shop at the western corner of Alpine Street and Glasgow Road (at 186 Glasgow Road). It was a grocers, confectionist and florist as pictured.
The shop was on the lower floor and the entrance was a large door at the corner of the building. There were 4 large plate glass windows, 2 on Glasgow Road, 2 on Alpine Street filled with beautiful displays of flowers and confectionary.To the immediate west on Glasgow Road was McCalls Shop and the Cinema. I’ve marked up the 1930s map to put the location into context.
However, it is believed by 1925, he had given up this shop. According to the valuation roll that year, there is no mention of the florist or confectionary shop but instead Thomas is listed as owning a garage and store at 8 Greenside Street, nearby, owning and living a house at 15 Church Street.
During 1930, the business was renamed Thomas Baxter & Sons and they owned a fruit store and garage at 19 Church Street on the east side of that street, living at 17 Church Street so the 1920s and 1930s were certainly decades of change for this family. The Baxter family would later go on to create Baxter’s Bluebird Buses then later was sold to RG Barret & Co in 1973.
From “Blantyre Explained” by Paul Veverka (c)