Tomorrow, Sunday 24 February 2019 will be a day when I fulfil a promise to an old friend, sadly departed.
In 2017, fellow Friends of the Calder colleague Stan Paul met up one evening at my home to share his Greenhall photos. It was a nostalgic evening for Stan and one where I learned a lot about the former private estate in High Blantyre, now in the hands of South Lanarkshire Council.
Stan asked for my help in trying to uncover something from his childhood. A set of steps that he had memories of climbing up and down as a child. They’re not there today, but the site is known exactly to me and is now in woodland. We promised to jointly go searching for them with a spade. However, work got in the way and each of us put it off for one reason or another, summer becoming winter and unsuitable for digging and never getting round to asking the council for permission.
Sadly Stan died in March 2018 and my promise to him still hung over me. Going through the proper channels, the council was eventually approached for permission and they are aware of this request.
So tomorrow, with the assistance of just a few colleagues from Friends of the Calder, in a minor, private dig, we’ll try to find these steps, for no other reason other than that’s what Stan ‘wanted to do’. I’ll be bringing along some photos (and wellies!). The steps may have been made of timber and could be long gone, but we hope to uncover something, perhaps the sides or dig a little at the base of them for an hour or so before filling back in. This is in no way an archaeological dig but will simply honour a kind, popular man no longer here.
Pictured are the fabled steps from 70 years ago and also photos of Stan at Greenhall as a child and then again later in life.