1978 Auchinraith Primary


1978 Calder Street School wmBetween 1978 and 1983, Strathclyde Council were to spend £60m on a schools improvement programme. This included improving some of Blantyre’s schools.

Due to overcrowding and large class sizes, much of this took the form of expansion or extensions being added. A drastic solution in 1978 was to turn the former Calder Street School into a new Auchinraith Primary School. It was considered a priority in the plans and as such this was second out of 49 planned extensions throughout Lanarkshire.

Some pupils from the Auchinraith Primary School had already moved to Calder Street in 1974 due to overcrowding. The old Primary School at Craig Street was overcrowded, unsafe, required extensive modernisation and had become very dilapidated. Some youngsters had a narrow escape when a classroom ceiling collapsed on them. So, some pupils were sent to Calder Street School.

On 21st August 1978, all 6 classes were sent to Saffronhall Annexe, Hamilton to allow the £175,000 renovation and modernisation of the Calder Street building to take place (pictured that winter). On 12th June 1979, they moved back from Saffronhall into the renovated Calder Street building and on 20th June 1979 joined by the rest of the pupils from Auchinraith, all under one roof leaving the old Primary School building at the top of Craig Street to be abandoned.

An inaugural evening on 5th September 1979 allowed parents to see the Calder Street building, soon to be known as the new Auchinraith Primary.

Other plans that year included the extension of Blantyre High School and a new Roman Catholic School in Blantyre.

From “Blantyre Explained” by Paul Veverka (c) 2017

Featuring Blantyre Project Social Media with permission. Strictly not for use by others on or offline, our visitors said,

Rab Mccarrol I remember getting bussed to the huts at Saffronhall, I must have been around primary 4 at the time, old falling to bits double deckers as I remember lol
John Cornfield We still never got the RC secondary to replace St Joseph junior secondary remember the days well they were supposed to build it at the dandy never happened obviously
John Cornfield Cheers Paul I’ll look forward to it
Gary Doonin 2 sites identified for that school was carlowrie avenue and thornhill avenue , the battle went on for about 5 years .
John Cornfield Thorhill = dandy Carlowrie TACT hall
Jacqueline Akelis Elaine Currie our old primary school xx
Elaine Currie Aww so it is. I took a photo of it being demolished I’m sure it’s on here somewhere xx
Paul Veverka Thanks Elaine. Your photos of the school demolition are in Blantyre Projects website. Ta
John Cornfield It was all pie in the sky 🌌
Alan Dorricott I was at Auchinraith for P1and P2. I remember someone was chosen to run round the school with a hand bell to end break times. I moved to High Blantyre primary when we moved house in 1978 while my classmates went to Calder Street
Carole M Castle I went to Calder Street when it was a secondary school x
Margaret Lappin Lyn Lappin Ian Lappin those were the days! xxx
Alison Walker-Hill We used Calder Street as an annex for Blantyre High……may just have been for our first year…..remember science classes and home ec (sewing) upstairs…think ground floor was primary.
Philip Pohler We had it for an annex during 1st and second year for science 1975/76. Teachers were Mr Robertson, Wee Berry an Miss Bremner
John Crothers I went to Calder street when it was a secondary school in 1961 I also went to auchinraith school when it was in Craig street in 1954 great memories of both
Kenny Weir The old Wilsons of Carnwath double deckers, good times getting bussed to school in those days with Evil Kinevil as the driver, good auld days ?
Ian Dino McDougall What year was that Kenny?I went to Auchinraith then Calder street and on to BHS.
Kenny Weir August 78 to June 79 👍
Moira Mulvaney Pacheco They had to replace all schools as they were full off Asbestos. They didn’t tell the people this .
The Blantyre Project Calder Street especially had become really run down inside. No insulation, poor wiring, broken heating systems, it was long overdue to be replaced by a modern school. I remember going to the BBs there for a time and was always freezing. Im amazed it was occupied for so long. School kids are SO lucky these days to have such amazing facilities.
Isabella Johnston McShane My memories of it was before that extention was put up and there were 2 entances at each side on the top of each entrance it said boys or girls..and there was no middle floor to the upper floor ..you could look down on the assembly hall…we got taught to iron ..with iron that were heated on a big plate no wires
Moira Mulvaney Pacheco My late cousin was the head of the heating for SLC and he told me years ago that they couldn’t do anything because of the Asbestos
Thea Borland Mcnamee I went to auchinraith prim in crsig st and cakder st was my secondary till i left school yr or so later blantyre high opened
Brenda Cropp Jeffrey Those buses! Thought we were going to have to get out and push on many occassion. Great happy times x
Sandra Georgeson Yes indeed!
Thomson Andy Miss fairlie was head teacher strict but fair , can still remember the smell of the gym hall with its wooden varnished floor
Sharon Reid I remember standing in the deep puddles made where the old school was sinking, with the water going over the top of my wellies.
Stephen Allan Was St Blanes the new Roman catholic primary school that was built in late 70s?
The Blantyre Project no Stephen. St Blanes existed earlier than that and was replaced post Millennium with a modern state of the art School, certainly regarded as one of the best in Blantyre. The RC School proposed in the late 70s was to be a secondary school where the TACT hall now is (being one of the proposed sites) but numbers of pupils were insufficient for it to go ahead. Protest groups combined numbers with Halfway RC pupils in an effort to get the council to listen, but it was overturned in favour of more cheaply expanding St John Ogilvie.

The full story of this is definitely scheduled in the next week or two.

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