Easter Sunday in Blantyre during 1907 was in reality an ideal day for many.
Travel and a day out in other towns was on the agenda for most people and thankfully, this was a time where Blantyre never had so many good travel connections. This was largely due to the newly opened tram extension line, which took passengers from Priory Bridge now into Cambuslang, Rutherglen and onwards to Glasgow. The Blantyre to Hamilton to Motherwell line to the east had opened four years earlier, but now for the first time, people could easily get from Blantyre to Glasgow by tram and boy, did people take advantage of that on this Easter public holiday. From early morning until late at night the trams were packed.
The ticket conductors leather satchel must have been weighted by the collected coin fares. To put it in a nutshell, the cars were literally unable to cope with the traffic, particularly between Priory Bridge and Cambuslang as people explored the new route, many workers finding now the first opportunity on a day off to do so. The cars on this route were besieged with people of all ages.
Blantyre itself received its own influx of visitors and reporters remarked that they couldn’t remember ever seeing so many people walking on both sides of Glasgow Road. (I’m sure the shopkeepers would have loved this!)
The car terminus points were busy, the scene of much animation, including people just wanting to watch others coming and going. As each tram left heading westwards towards Glasgow, the Blantyre terminus was left with still hundreds of people more anxious to hopefully catch the next car. It was a common sight, even right up until 10 o clock in the evening.
A truly glorious day for the Tramway Company, but also for the Railways, with trains as equally busy. The holiday effect also kicking in at the train stations. Mr Edwards, stationmaster was kept very busy with enquiries. All the ordinary trains were duplicated, with twice as many running, with the last trains at night particularly crammed full of people.
The majority of visitors were very well behaved and drunkenness was thankfully lacking.