End of Old Parish Church Halls, 1989

 

1960s scouts at High Blantyre wm

Blantyre Scouts are pictured outside High Blantyre Old Parish Church Halls. At Main Street during the 1960s, do you know any of the scouts or those pictured?

The Church Halls would later be demolished in early February 1989 to make way for the re-alignment of Hunthill Road. Its demolition saw the end of an era for the Church, the hall being a centre of social activities since the early 1890’s. It accommodated not just the scouts, but many other organisations including the Sunday School and women’s guild.

Tom McLean, who had been a session clerk for the church for 40 years by 1989, said at the time, “It was sad to see the hall demolished just 2 years before its centenary of being commissioned. But we have to be realistic. The building was old. The new alignment of Hunthill Road will be much safer and of course Blantyre has been promised a sheltered housing complex by the council. Lets not forget, plans are already underway for our new hall too.”

The building was taken down carefully in stages so as many materials could be salvaged as possible. The doorway pictured was of considerable interest. Contractors were optimistic of finding artefacts or a time capsule, especially. Behind the date stone, certain artefacts had been concealed in a void during the time of construction, artefacts that had been there nearly 100 years.

Tom McLean had commented on his hopes of finding alleged sovereign coins, a Hamilton Advertiser and other items relevant to the year it had been built, but it unknown to me if any were found.

The closure of the hall actually created a few problems, for the new hall would not be ready until September of that year, a half year later. Other areas had to be found for organisations and these included the church and the manse stables (old mens club rooms). By September 1989, the Church had built a new manse and hall within those last 20 years, all raised by money from the Congregation.

Work on the re-alignment of Hunthill Road commenced in March 1989.

Partly 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,:

Elizabeth Lovatt My brother John Bennoch is top far right and Gordon Davis is two over from him the tallest person.

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