Eye Spy Glasgow: Springburn's locomotive past bulldozed to make way for a motorway

All over Glasgow there are memories of the days when the city was one of the world's great industrial powerhouses.

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Some old shipyard cranes still stand on the Clyde, where some of the biggest ships that sailed the oceans were built.

The shopping centre at Parkhead is called the Forge in memory of the massive steel works that once stood there.

And let's not forget Springburn, a name synonymous with the manufacturing of railway locomotives.

Older residents of the area who remember the heyday of the loco works will scarcely recognise Springburn today.

It was one of the areas of Glasgow bulldozed to make way for the motorway and slum clearance.

Springburn has never had its problems to seek - but in the past the railways gave it a huge sense of pride.

There were four giant industrial companies operating out of Springburn - the St Rollox Works, the Cowlairs Works, the Hyde Park Works and the Atlas Works.

St Rollox is still in operation as a maintenance depot, the others closed in the 60s as Glasgow's industrial decline was in full swing.

In the mid-1800s, railway lines were beginning to spring up linking Glasgow with the coalfields of Lanarkshire.

One of the lines, the Garnkirk and Glasgow Railway, supplied the St Rollox Chemical Works.

So Springburn was a logical choice for the setting up of the loco works.

In time the area went on to employ thousands and in the early part of last century was building one quarter of the world's locomotives.

The plaque in the picture is built into St Rollox House, once a major railway building and now used by Rosemount Lifelong Learning.

It reads: St Rollox Railway Works. Founded in 1854 by the Caledonian Railway to build and repair railway locomotives, carriages and wagons, greatly extended in the 1880s by Dugald Drummond."

Drummond was a railway engineer from Ardrossan who was with the Caledonian Railway in Springburn during a time of great expansion.

There are a number of plaques in Springburn which pay homage to the glory days of the railway works - this is just one of them.

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