THE now-vanished Hamilton Palace, the home of the Dukes of Hamilton, was among the grandest houses in the whole of Europe.

Built in 1695, on the site of a 13th Century tower house, it was subsequently much enlarged.

Funded by the vast wealth generated from the family's Lanarkshire coal fields, the free-spending Dukes toured the globe to fill their home with the finest works of art.

Meanwhile, beneath their very feet, their own miners were hastening the demise of the great house. As the mines were stripped of coal, the house began to subside.

After seeing service as a military hospital during the First World War, the house was demolished in 1921.

A health club, sports facilities and an Asda superstore now stand on the site of the original palace in Low Parks, Hamilton.