Donna Robertsons Memories of Bridgeton


I went to Queen Mary st school until I was ten.. For some reason they shut it as a school and made it into some type of nursery sadly.

 I was sent to Dalmarnock school for a year and hated every minute… all the pals I knew had moved away to the schemes and they all left for a new primary in their areas… so it was a horrible year for me at this new school being mixed with strangers who didnae want us there in the class.. I left getting allowed a place at John st school, another mistake as I didn’t know anyone there either, I did meet some nice folk there through time right enough.

Funny how I never paid attention to the old graveyard facing the school on Tullis st as I was always interested in the past and all sorts of history.. , I don’t even think I noticed it was there when I am out the gate facing Landressy street back then…

John st had three main buildings… the first was where we did English Maths and Typing or Commercial as they called it then.. Which included shorthand and office practice. The building further down the playground on the left was for science. French, Art and PE. This was my favourite building as I loved art…. on the other side was a wee building that didn’t seem to get used much.. there was a gym hall, and two or three science classes that were never used. and a domestic science classroom.. But it always seemed quiet and empty when we went in for PE… there were also outbuildings like wee prefabs.. Not sure now how many.. but think about four classes in there…. maths and English.

 Sadly a fire was started in the school… nothing to do with me, as I had left haha… but a new school was built or rushed up.. a horrible flat factory style one with no character, it didn’t last very long and when I moved back to Bridgeton the remains of it were still here…. now all demolished and new flats have taken over the space….. most of the residents wont know that a lovely old school stood there on that ground… most wont care to be honest…..round the back of where the hockey and football grounds were a small piece of old wall still remains… I have photos Ill put on soon…. just a shame another piece of Bridgeton history gone forever…

My memories of Bridgeton Cross were of a vibrant busy shopping centre, with many to browse the windows…. Timpsons shoe shop stood right on the corner of Main st and Dalmarnock road, it had two entrances, one at the corner and one in Main st… it was always well lit with three big windows to look into.. a lovely shop… next to it on Main st. was Carsons the jewellers , then Isobel Towns baby clothes shop.. Which sold the latest Italian fashions for babies and was very popular…Cooks cold meat shop and the City Bakeries were next.. a laundrette too, something we dont see much of nowadays.

Shops continued right down Main st with pubs on every corner.. Logies was a big shop that sold curtains, valances. Blinds etc on the corner of Main st and James street.. With windows on both sides… I loved in that shop as they used one of those machines where the put the money in a tube and it got blew up to the office upstairs.. Fascinated me….

 They always wrapped goods in brown paper taken from what seemed a gigantic roll on a chrome roller with a cutter edge. Then they would tie string round the parcel and knot it… To the left of Logies on Main st was the Maypole… loved this shop with mirrors inside each of the entrances on the opposite walls. so was fun for weans waiting with their mammys in the queue… the floor was black and white small check tiles and sacks of stuff like sugar. Lay round the counter on the outside… light were round shades hanging from long wires from the ceiling and all the workers wore white overalls..And were always smartly dressed….. Wonderful wee shop… next to it was Weaver to Wearers tailors… back in the days when nearly everyone had made to measure suits mad.

Blairs butchers was next always queued out as their meat was the best….and I got sent often to get links and mince from there……On James street across the road at the Cross was Cockburns the chemist on corner… with a cafe to the left then the big Post Office…. to the right of Cockburns was a bank then the Hosiery Wool shop and Easiephit shoe shop.. so we were well taken care of in the shoe dept as there were other shoe shops in Dalmarnock road and Main street. Cafe s too seemed to be as popular as pubs, well maybe not just as much as there seemed to be pubs all over Bridgeton…

 The Cactus at Dalmarnock road that I think was the Draymens years before… The Mermaid, Dominion still there… to name a few….even picture halls for such a small area seem to be well provided for with the Olympia. Royal. Plaza. Kings Geggie, Arcadia, I think the Orient came under Bridgeton too….. My mammy was at the opening of the Orient and said they were all given a commemorative programme with Laurel and Hardy on the cover. sadly she didn’t keep it…funny enough she worked in the Orient after it was changed into a Bingo in the 60s… and a place no one seems to remember…. The Cigar Club. a casino in the same building to the right hand side , her and my auntie Peggy were the cleaners in there for a few years…so much gone now but thanks to this site it will be kept alive for a long time for others to read and remember

I lived in Fordneuk st from 1947 for about ten years, then when we moved round the corner to Broad st.. There was a dairy, Quigleys at the close, a wee gathering place for the women to gossip and stayed open to very late at night… next door was Orr s the butcher, two brothers worked in it. then Peters the fruit shop on the corner.

Across Broad st facing these shops was Plenderleiths newsagents…. always thought it was a strange name…. and never knew anyone else with it…. across Fordneuk st was Fernies chip shop, Fernie was Italian and his wife Yolanda worked with him… Further along Broad st towards Templetons , was St Marnock st. where a Cooperative shop stood on the corner… next to it was a fruit shop. Which later became a newsagents.. Next to it was a wee dairy.. So we were well catered for with shops.

 Although the other end of Broad st was sparse of shops till you got to near Orr street where there was a dairy, facing it was the International Bar on the corner. and to the right of it on Park Lane corner was the Park Lane Tavern which faced a building which had once been a cinema , The Langham Hall but it closed in the 30s I’ve read….to the right of the Langham on the Broad st /Orr street corner was an old fashioned cobbler.. the building still stands to this day…. as does the Langham Hall building… all the rest has gone sadly…

6 thoughts on “Donna Robertsons Memories of Bridgeton

  1. Thomas Park

    Hi Donna,

    Loved your thoughts and memories of Bridgeton. I also stayed in Broad St, across from Corporation bus depot but we got re-housed in 1969 to Tollcross, as they were pulling down the tenements to allow Lyle’s Carpet factory to expand but that never did materialise.

    My Dad is 88 years old and currently in a nursing home and he keeps talking about being brought up in Queen Mary St and talks about his parents Joe & Agnes Park (maiden name Causlin), unfortunately I never new them ,or I was too young to remember them? My Dad has dementia and I am now thinking “how could I trace both of them? and when they passed away?

  2. Bill Peacock

    Hi Donna
    I think your article is very interesting l went to John st primary then on to john st secondary my mam was the loly pop lady for john street primary in the 70s I wonder if you would know the name of a pup which I think was around Baltic st it has the old style salon doors my uncle Duncan ran it for a time in the early 70s
    Kind Regards

  3. donna robertson

    There were so many factories in Bridgeton that we never thought anything of it, my mum worked in the Acme in David st as well as Cowans chocolate factory and other factories around the area..There was another factory in Broad st where or three aunties worked but I can only remember how the place sounded to me as never saw the name in writing as far as I remember…the wall of the factory still stands today in old worn bricks… The called it what sounded like Coorshies, or Kurshies.. not sure, maybe someone on here might know, this was in the later forties early fifties.. they might have made mattresses , but not really sure…

  4. donna robertson

    Funnily my auntie Nell and Uncle John lived in Dalserf st in the 60s.. but I dont know the name from there..

  5. Catherine

    Hi Donna, after reading your article I was surprised to see the name Plenderleith. It brought back memories to me. I lived in Law St, Barrowfield and new a James Plenderleith briefly, I think he lived in Delserf St. As you said an unusual name. Great memories.

  6. donna robertson

    Ive just been reading about the Queen of Scots underwear factory in Crownpoint Road.. it said that it closed either during or after the first world war… Ive asked around but no one seems to have heard of the place..


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