On Monday 5th June 1978, just a day before the Public Inquiry into the redevelopment of Glasgow Road, the three remaining objectors withdrew their objections, meaning for the first time , the scheme was completely unblocked.
The dramatic u turn came about just one day before proceedings had been due to start, which would ultimately have seen the Glasgow Road demolition and renovation being delayed by a considerable time.
Hamilton District Council officials had been involved in the negotiations coming to a settlement with the 3 objectors, having seen the Co-op withdraw their objection the week before. The news came as huge relief to the council who now looked to progress their plans.
Mr Gordon Gilfillan, Council Director of Planning said, “Relief is the right word to express our feelings. The way to redevelopment of Blantyre is a whole way clearer than it was last week. We had originally intended to start work next month (July 1978), but there is now a whole lot more to do.”
At that time the Secretary of State for Scotland still had to confirm the Council’s compulsory purchase orders for the properties which were on the proposed ASDA footprint. After that demolition was planned of the existing tenements. It was estimated demolition and building work would commence at the end of 1978, around Christmas.
The objectors were given “certain guarantees” about how their businesses would be affected after the arrival of Asda and the development of Glasgow Road. The cancellation of the inquiry was also likely the final straw for the co-op who, despite withdrawing their objection, had been interested in pursuing it separately on a legal basis. However, with no objections at all now recorded by 5th June 1978, even the council admitted in public that it was unlikely that any business , individual or organisation would now be a blocker to the proposals.
Pictured in 1979 is Glasgow Road at Craig Street, a scene that would completely change and today now is the pedestrian precinct of the Clydeview Shopping centre.
From “Blantyre Explained” by Paul Veverka (c) 2017
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