Funding for Blantyre’s roads being repaired and upgraded has ALWAYS been a hot topic! Setting a budget and sticking to it was just as important in Victorian times as it is today. Take for example, this extract of Accounts for Blantyre’s Roads for the year 1859.
Mr J Wardrop Moore of Greenhall was treasurer and fellow High Blantyre man Thomas McClelland, the collector of funds.
Year ending 7th February , 1860.
Receipts (money collected) amounted to £178, 6s and 4.5d, with £45 of this being collected directly from householders making contributions.
Expenditure was exactly the same i.e the Parish spent all the money they collected on ensuring roads were upgraded and in some cases, new roads created in Blantyre. £108 of this was spent on materials and labour needed for the roads, the rest going to surveyors and equipment.
It wasn’t a great sum, perhaps around £80,000 in today’s money. A reflection of course that Blantyre even then only had around 3,000 residents and many of the roads, simply were country tracks and lanes, capable of taking horse and pedestrian traffic only!
The map attached reflects that very year.