Stonefield Road, Blantyre 1915

From the illustrated social history book…

“Blantyre – Glasgow Road, The Real Story” by Paul Veverka (c) 2016 – 2018.

Exploring Stonefield Road

   Stonefield Road takes its name after the old district of ‘Stonefield’ in Blantyre, which in the early 20th Century actually extended from this point southwards up to Larkfield and as far east along either side of Glasgow Road towards Auchinraith Road.

   The road, initially a track connected Larkfield down to the Glasgow to Hamilton Road and may have been formed properly when the Free Church was constructed midway up the road. It offered a good way for people to walk from Glasgow Road up to Larkfield and branch off to Barnhill or Causeystanes at High Blantyre.

   At the lower northern end of Stonefield Road, a cluster of several houses and a public house were the only buildings in the mid 19th Century in this area. However, like the rest of Stonefield, rapid growth in the 1860’s to 1890’s saw many other homes built with shops on the lower levels.


Stonefield Road looking to Glasgow Road junction 1915

   Prominent buildings like Commercial Place, Dixon’s Rows and the important tram terminus would define the character of this area, with the majesty of the School Chapel and later St Joseph’s Church looking down on them. This was a thriving, popular area of Blantyre with fleshers, bakers, cafes, grocers, public houses, church, a post office, cobblers as well as many other trades.

   Popular former shops are embedded in the memories of Blantyre residents. Certainly some of the most talked about are amongst the following:

·       Mickey’s Café De Royal,

·       Scobie’s Bakery,

·       Cameron’s the Butcher,

·       Sweenie’s Confectionery,

·       Gilbert the Baker,

·       Black the Baker,

·       McCorgary’s DIY,

·       Chalmers Emporium,

·       Smart the Butchers,

·       Benham’s Newsagents,

·       Geoff Pate’s Newsagents,

·       Lightbody’s Bakery shop

·       The Red Lion Pub,

·       The Old Original Pub,

·       The Black Hole,

·       Clyde Star Video,

·       Loughlin’s Cobblers,

·       Scotmid Chemist,

·       KG Copystat,

·       Tan Unique,

·       The Launderette,

·       The Priory Inn,

·       Mecca Bookmakers

·       William Hill Bookmakers,

·       Hair by Brogan,

·       Melanie Brown’s Salon,

·       Spar,

·       Stonefield Newsagents.

   Perhaps the most commercially astute was the Valerio family. The Café De Royal (Mickey’s) established in 1906 will be fondly remembered by many people, even right into the 1980’s. Mickey Valerio cleverly penned the slogan on his adverts, which catered for all weather, “Do you feel cold? Try a coffee now. You feel hot? Have an Ice. “

   This was a great shopping area for more than 100 years, but now, since the 1990’s only has shops on the western side near the junction.

   Not so much “everything you will need in one place”, but now more like “some things you may need (from time to time!)”

From the illustrated book, “Blantyre Glasgow Road South – The Real Story” by Paul Veverka (c) 2017

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

Stephen Anderson Don’t forget Norris’s (before Pate’s) and the Commercial Bar (before Priory) Paul.
Eddie Campaigne yep I was wullie Norris message boy!!…big bike and basket!!

Stephen Anderson Still remember the big meat slicer and everything being sliced to order.
Blantyre Project Thanks Stephen. I always forget about Norris’s at this location. I dont think it was a shop i was ever in. I’ll make sure i add that to the list.

Stephen Anderson And wee Hughie McGee was the cobbler in my days, remember having to go downstairs into the wee shop and it always smelling of glue and leather (obviously)
Eddie Campaigne Mc Callums was the grocer opposite Norris’s ..he had a message boy as well! …the cobbler was Tommy Lauchlin, in the 60’s mc vets bookies next door to norris’s past the billboards

Eddie Campaigne whoops Mc veys

Stephen Anderson And Mick Cassidy ran Mickey’s (Cafe de Royal) before it closed down, don’t think he was allowed to sell fags though so never lasted long.
Blantyre Project I think he sold fags from fag machines at the side of the property, although were prone to “being tanned” often.

 Robert Stewart McCallum’s, Benham’s was also a green grocers, Sam Maxwell had a grocer’s before he converted it to the ‘Red Loin’, Hastie the Baker, Forrest the bookie, don’t ever remember Lightbody’s in this area.
 Teresa McKinnon Lightbody’s was on the other side of the road from Mickey’s cafe next to Sweeney butchers

Robert Stewart The only bakers I remember next to Sweeney the butcher’s was Gilbert’s.
Jane Maxwell Your right Gilbert’s is the only bakers l have ever known on Stonefield Rd right next door to Sweeney the butchers. These two shops were regular places my mum would buy her butcher meat and rolls and tea bread as she called buns , fruit loaf and my dad loved their Doly Varden l probably did not spell that right but it was a favourite.

Jimbo McSkimming commercial bar
Maggie Anderson This is how my Mother would have seen this street…she was born in 1915 at Baird’s Rows and attended the chapel school seen at the foot of Stonefield Road
Maureen Friery Moran Charlie Greenhorn had a pet shop across from the Priory in the late sixties/ early seventies.
Arlene Campbell Norris was on the left … always remember going in with my gran for sliced roast pork .. then crossing over into mickeys for a five center
Marian Maguire Remember when the street and shops looked like this.
Betty Brown Hugh mc Corgaries do it urself store,fish and chips store send bookies.
Betty Brown Gibson the groceries, where 21. Bus came in, Jim McSorley I see David gibson’s shop just caught on the right. There was a Davey gibson grocery van that serviced Blantyre wonder if there was a connection??
James Sime Hasties bakers next to the tunnel next to Mickeys

Elizabeth Bradley I was also brought up in Bairds Rows and attended St.Joseph’s school in the picture but I was born in 1942. Betty Clarkin Bradley
Margaret Sanderson I loved the smell of the fresh produce in McCallum’s shop. I remember my mum buying loose butter here. The assistant would cut a lump of butter from the large round of butter, weigh it and then form it into a shape using ribbed butter patties before wrapping it up in greaseproof paper.

Laurie Allan Crothers What is the building facing us in the picture?
Blantyre Project This was the former St Joseph’s School/Chapel prior to the St Josephs Church being built.
Laurie Allan Crothers Thanks for that. When was the current St Joseph’s Chapel built then?
Blantyre Project Laurie started in 1903 and completed in 1905. It was subjected sadly to a lot of vandalism and theft during its construction, clearly upsetting some particular groups in Blantyre than something so majestic was being built.

Jim McSorley Walked past that location going to the Joes school for three years in the early 70 s

Sally Jamieson Anyone remember Mars Bar and Ice Cream in Mickey’s cafe.

Anton Le Grandier very well indeed.At least my remaining teeth do 🙂

Ann Hartman Remember the cafe well spent many a Sunday in there with pals late 60s instead of going to mass unfortunately was caught and that put the end to that (was still worth it )
Marian Maguire My mum remembered when mickeys young daughter was knocked down and killed, I think outside where the hall is just now. Poor wee soul.
Jim Canning My Father seen the accident, after that he had a habit of meeting me leaving School to make sure I crossed the road safely.

Anton Le Grandier Mickeys was one of my favourite places and I will always have a fondness for the name Valerio.Seems I wasnt the only one to dodge mass sitting in Mickeys……🙄


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