Causewayshott, Causewayshot or ‘Causeway Shott Place’ was a former 2 storey tenement situated between Walker’s Building and the Westend. Its location today would be in the front gardens of modern Cloudhowe Terrace.
Original constructors were J&J Walker (joiners of Larkfield) who in 1876 acquired the land from Mr. Jackson of Bardykes. Initially 6 homes, they were sometime in the 1880’s later subdivided into 11 homes.
It is known the building was completed by April 1877, as a publican, Thomas Geddes Junior applied for an alcohol license there that month. He was refused by the authorities, perhaps on the basis that other pubs were already nearby. J&J Walker appear to have sold the building by 1877 entirely over to new owner, Walter Wheeling, a manufacturer at 30 Cadzow Street, Hamilton who would let the houses out from afar.
In October 1877, just a week before the Blantyre Pit Disaster, Walter applied for a license himself from the authorities. Later valuation rolls indicate he was also not successful in that application. Some of his initial tenants by the mid 1880’s were Peter Scott, James Todd. Michael Murphy and John Jackson. Access to some of the upper homes was via rear steps.
During the early 1890’s, Walter sold Causewayshott Place to David Orr, a grocer of 3 Low Patrick Street, Hamilton. It is thought David was the instigator of changing the name to “Douglas Place”, perhaps to avoid any confusion with the existing name Causeystanes, part of High Blantyre. Certainly by 1901, the homes were now 12 in number, spread over 2 storeys all with the name “Douglas Place”. Valuation rolls of 1895 and 1905 confirm this is indeed the same building as formerly named Causewayshott.
By 1915, David Orr was letting Douglas Place out to 14 miner’s and their families, maximizing the space in the building for the highest rental potential. There were never any businesses run from this property. In those early times it had address 353 to 357 Glasgow Road, but this would change after 1930 and the subsequent road widening to become 443 – 457 Glasgow Road.
In 1915, one match found in possession of Walter Sneddon, miner of 6 Douglas Place was found in No. 2 Pit, Udston Colliery (where, safety lamps are required). Walter was prosecuted at Hamilton Sheriff Court where he admitted the charge and was fined 10s, or three days’ imprisonment
David Orr moved his own business around in Hamilton between Townhead Street and eventually to Quarry Street, renting out Douglas Place in Blantyre in retirement and until his own death in the late 1920’s. Thereafter, trustees of David Orr took ownership.
Tenants in 1935 were mostly miners and it is very prudent to suggest that these men were mostly working nearby at Priory or Bardykes Pits not too far off from these homes. Tenants included the Robertsons, Feeneys, Logans, Cassidys, Kanes, McCluskeys, O’Briens, Smiths, McDades, Kennans and Tooles. ‘Douglas Place’ was demolished in the 1940’s, the site cleared by 1945 evident in aerial photos of that year.
Before we leave the story of Causewayshott / Douglas Place let’s go back again to constructors, contractors J&J Walker. The partnership was between James Walker, joiner who lived at the bottom of Stonefield Road and his son James Walker Junior, residing at nearby Walker’s Building. Both men were joiners.
The business appears to have been subjected to bankruptcy in the late 19th Century, with James Senior residing at Glebe Cottage in High Blantyre, then afterwards at School Lane. Competition from local joinery and sawmill businesses from the Adams, Roberts and Warnock families, would likely have made trading more competitive. By 1905, James was at Athole Cottage, his own house at High Blantyre. His son would own homes in Calder Street, a return to house ownership. There are no entries for the family after 1930.
From the book “Blantyre Glasgow Road South – The Real Story” by Paul Veverka (c) 2017
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