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Baillieston and District Memories
The area we now call the Baillieston district has, since ancient times been a Borderland and to this day, in effect still is. We know that Bronze Age people inhabited the area from evidence excavated at Fauldshill and Greenoakhill but I doubt whether the theme of this article goes that far back. I only mention it to acknowledge the recorded beginning of time in this district.
The story really starts from the times of the Damnonii - a Briton people who (we are told) lived in this district and most of the Clyde valley before and during the Roman occupation and with its proximity to the Antonine Wall made it a Borderland. Later, after the third (and final) Roman withdrawal it still lay betwixt the fierce Maeatae (Pictish) tribes of the north and the Damnonii and so, continued to be a borderland.
In the centuries afterwards, in medieval times it formed the extreme western part of the lands of the Monks of Newbotil (or Newbottle/Newbattle) who gained a charter from Malcolm IV in AD1162 to what is now known as the Monklands. However, just over a hundred years later, in AD1267 it was, along with the lands of Kermyl (Carmyle) redeemed by the Bishop of Glasgow and dedicated to the sustenance of three chaplains who were to celebrate divine services in the church of Glasgow. A transcript to the Papal Bull dated AD1273 mentions such, and this, incidently, debunks the myth that the monks of Newbottle farmed and mined coal in the Baillieston district "for centuries."
So the district lay astride the power of the barons of Clydesdale like Hamilton, Douglas and De Moravia (Murray) and the ecclesiastical statutory power of the Bishops of Glasgow. A borderland.
After the Reformation the area was absorbed into the Badermonoch which later became known as Munkland, and, in 1640 or thereabouts it formed the western part of the new parish of Old or West Munkland. This parish was part of the Regality (or Royalty) of Glasgow and the then (Baillieston) district was mostly still under feu to the sub-dean of Glasgow Cathedral, so it formed the border of the Regality and the Barony of Glasgow. The situation remained much the same for the next 50 years or so when the Commissioners of Supply replaced the Sherrif and Baillies and became the King's governing authority for the county of Lanark until county councils were formed in 1883. Now the district became the border between the county and the second city of the Empire. That situation remained for 92 years till 1975 when the wheel in a way turned full circle back to the equivalent of 1267 when the area was re-zoned to the city of Glasgow, and returned to the authority of the modern day burghers of Glasgow.
Within the district which has become Baillieston there are also many borders which can be traced back in some cases nearly 500 years. What then, wasnt rented then was useless moorland and bog.
The ancient farms and settlements of Barrachnie, Blackyards, Burntbroom, Bredisholm, Conflats, Easter and Wester Daldowie and Windyedge, and, two hundred years more recent, fermtouns such as Muirside, Hole, Rhindmuir and Rhinds, followed by the relatively younger Baillieston, naturally, had boundaries. These borders or boundaries of the ancient lands and the more recent estates that emerged had borders within the borderlands.
Let us take an imaginary walk through the district as we know the streets in the present form and discover how these borders still exist today in those streets.
We start in the south at the roundabout on Hamilton Road at the entrance to the former Calderpark zoo. Standing with the entrance road on our right, we have the lands of Calderpark which used to be part of Easter Daldowie in the 16th. Century but was sold off in the following century and on the left we have Easter Daldowie (first record of, in 1518) , we then walk west a short distance (the very same route that Bonnie Prince Charlie and his army walked in 1745) and turn right towards Baillieston, still with Easter Daldowie on the left (this part anciently known as Laws Hill which was corrupted through the ages to Lusshill) and Calderpark on the right till we come to the bottom of the Hangmans Brae when, the lands on the right become Blackyards which stretched to the Calder and is recorded from 1521 we walk up the brae, into Muirhead Road till Station Road, turn into that road and we have Bredisholm (recorded in 1566) on the left with Blackyards again on the right. Walk back up the brae, turning right up the Muirhead Road brae, and turn right into Bredisholm Road, keeping Bredisholm land on our right and Easter Daldowie on our left. We then turn left into Ravenswood Road down to the Lights.
Crossing over we arrive in Swinton when you will enter the lands of Rhindmuir. Now if you wanted to head for Bargeddie on the Coatbridge Road, you would be in Rhindmuir if you kept to the left and Bredisholm if you walked along the right hand footpath. However well walk through Swinton till we get to the roundabout which used to be called Swinton Cross. Having arrived there we cross the road and arrive in the ancient lands of Hallhill which in the 1600s stretched as far south as Barrachnie and the present Garrowhill.
We turn south and cross the Edinburgh Road into Easter Barrachnie land, we turn left and then right into Swinton road, proceeding to Dyke Street. Now if we turn left and cross the road well be back in Easter Daldowie, but well turn right into Camp Road and walk along that border between Easter Barrachnie and Easter Daldowie until we reach Hathersage Avenue, turn left there, to Whirlow Road, which we cross and enter Wester Barrachnie.
Continuing our stroll till we reach Beech Avenue which is the oldest still existing road from the 17th.century in the present Garrowhill we arrive in the lands of Baillieston (Estate), the original Ballieston, from which the village along the road took its name - we turn left and cross over the old Airdrie turnpike road, now called Glasgow Road, into Ladyhill Drive where proceeding downhill to Old Wood Road we cross yet another border into the lands of Wester Daldowie. Following this ancient track south which is also the border between the two afore mentioned lands from the Main Street to almost the railway line, we arrive at Caldedonia Road and turn right back into Baillieston for a brief 100 meters or so until we cross into the again, very ancient lands of Burntbroom. We continue walking along Caledonia Road until we reach the southern part of Gargrave Avenue and within a few metres or so we cross into the lands of Windyedge (renamed Mount Vernon in 1742), continuing up that road through the old land which present residents are erroneously under the impression is called Burntbroom, when in fact it is historically, since 1742 Mount Vernon, and before that, Windyedge we cross what used to be known as Ladyhill and head to the old village of Barrachnie and cross the old turnpike road again and into Wester Barrachnie.
So ends a walk through centuries of history of the Borderlands which we know as Baillieston and district and are reminded in that walk by the route we took that the ancient lands from the middle ages are still with us today and that they formed the basic structure of the present street plan.