With exception of the corner of the Avon Buildings, the only other buildings on the eastern side of Jackson Street was a double storey semi-detached tenement.
Between 1906 and 1909, Mr William Roberts, the joiner of Robert land, acquired land to the rear of his property. His new plot was in Jackson Street and he constructed a single detached tenement which had address 5 and 7 Jackson Street.
These were very well built homes, significantly taller than other 2 storey buildings. Less common for tenements, they were built of brick and had bay windows at the front and stairs accessing the upper houses at the rear. In all there were 9 initial homes in the block the first tenants being James Roberts a joiner, Thomas Taylor a plumber, William Smith an enginekeeper, Laurence Craig a barman, Archibald Muir a clerk, Robert Swinton a dentist, Joseph Jardine a pitworker and James Smith enginekeeper. One house was empty in 1915. Robert Swinton’s home was larger and he paid £4 a year more in rent, indicating he may have run his dental practice from there.
William Roberts was forward thinking in understanding what his tenants wanted and was one of the pioneering builders in Blantyre to ensure washing spaces, toilets and baths were inside the building in the houses themselves, not in closes, or shared or outside. These homes would have been desirable and naturally higher rents of £13 per year at the time reflected this.
During World War 1, William sold his building in Jackson Street to family member, David Roberts, a teacher who lived at 12 Herbertson Street. Rents were raised up to £21 per annum perhaps telling that in the space of 5 years almost all tenants renting as aforementioned had changed.
By 1936 a further tenement had been built to the south, again owned by David Roberts. With the Co-op renumbering their building, these 2 tenements became known as 7 and 9 Herbertson Street. Owner David may have moved to Bothwell sometime after this.
During the 1960’s access was made at the rear gardens into adjacent Roberts Land at the back. A large high stone wall separated the properties and the adjacent Co-op. Around the same time, 4 small garages were built at the end of Jackson Street.
It is incorrectly written by others that Jackson Place or Jackson Terrace was in this street, but those properties were located off Stonefield Road, owned by Dixon’s Pits and nowhere near this location.
Families continued to live in Jackson Street homes until they were acquired by the council’s compulsory purchase order in 1977.
They were demolished in 1978, a year or so earlier than the demolition of nearby Co-op Central Premises.
From the book, “Blantyre Glasgow Road South – The Real Story” by Paul Veverka (c) 2017
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