A community concert was held one Friday evening in March 1900 with the purpose of raising money to improve certain aspects of Blantyre.
In particular, there was the intention of raising funds for more efficient railings around the old (disused) burying ground near Blantyre Works. It was noted that many of the old families of Blantyre were interred there and in particular, the ancestors of Dr David Livingstone, the great Explorer.
Mr Hugh Mayberry, then the commissioner of Blantyre Estate presided and was accompanied on the platform by Mr. Martin, auditor, Caledonian Railway Company; Parish Councillors McQuarrie and Reid; Mr. William Jolly the former H.M Inspector of Schools and other local gentlemen.
Speeches were made about Livingstone’s exploits in Africa, a country at the time at war, with many British soldier overseas. The concert proved a great success and the hall was filled to overflowing. The artists were Madame Mackie soprano; Mr. Hyslop baritone; Mr. Shields, comic; Mr W Watson elocutionist, and the Douglas Troupe of Dancers. Mr. Robert Steven presided at the piano.
At the close Mr. Martin paid a well merited compliment to the chairman for presiding and for the interest he had taken in the district generally, and to the various ladies on the occasion. The Committee raised £13, which would at the time have considerably assisted the intended improvement of buying new railings. It was also intended that an open air concert that coming summer would be able to raise the rest of the funds.
From “Blantyre Explained” by Paul Veverka (c) 2016