THE pace of change on Glasgow’s streetscapes, parks and riversides is so fast, sometimes it’s hard to remember what the city once looked like.

A new book, Glasgow: The Postcard Collection, takes a nostalgic look back through the decades via a charming series of old picture postcards and the result is an enchanting reminder of the city’s beautiful past.

Author Adam Smith, who is originally from Cumbernauld, has been collecting old postcards for many years so when the opportunity arose to publish a book, he jumped at the chance.

“I have been gathering old postcards for several years now and have increased my collection substantially since I started writing the book – I pick up interesting postcards wherever I can,” he explains.

This is Adam’s second book – he also wrote Cumbernauld Through Time in 2015, a compilation of around 90 ‘then and now’ pictures of the area.

“My family have resided in Cumbernauld for 120 years and helped to form the New Town in December 1955,” explains Adam, who is a member of many community organisations working to positively promote the area.

“I’m fascinated by Glasgow – I was born in the city and my family also have links with the Gorbals.

“Amberley Books have a Postcard Collection series covering various towns and cities in the UK but they haven't had one of Glasgow, until now.”

He adds: “I'm a civil servant for the UK Government but I studied journalism when I left school and have written for local and national newspapers and magazines over the years.”

The postcards chart the city’s development from its beginnings as a small rural settlement on the River Clyde, through its expansion in the early eighteenth century as one of Britain's principal transatlantic trade hubs with North America and the West Indies, to its position as one of the world's largest seaports.

As the Industrial Revolution took hold, Glasgow continued to thrive, becoming world famous for its shipbuilding and marine industries. In Victorian times Glasgow was recognised as the 'Second City of the British Empire', while today it is one of the top ten financial centres in Europe.

Adam says: “My favourite postcards in the book are those where I've been able to share stories which many people may have forgotten about or simply have never known, such as the fact there was once a train station at the entrance to the Botanic Gardens, the remains of which can still be seen today, or that huge international exhibitions came to Glasgow, including the one at Bellahouston Park in 1938.”

The Empire exhibition, as it was known, attracted around 12 million visitors to the city over the six months between May and December. Held to celebrate the achievements of the former British Empire and to generate investment following the recent economic depression, it featured pavilions centred on key areas of excellence including engineering and industry.

It was designed by a team of architects, including Basil Spence and Jack Coia, and it was held during one of the wettest summers on record - Adam has included a postcard in the collection which reads on the back: “The weather has been truly awful most of the time.”

Adam also enjoyed retelling the story of the grand St Andrews Halls, which were almost entirely destroyed by fire in 1962.

“They opened in 1877 as a performance and function venue with the Grand Hall having a capacity of 4500 and acoustics said to be the best in Europe,” he explains.

“The Mitchell Library, which opened in 1911, backed on to the halls and when the fire destroyed most of the original building, the remaining façade was incorporated into the library and adjoining MitchellTheatre on Granville Street.”

The book also includes interesting scenes of Glasgow's parks, such as The Linn and the Botanic Gardens, and its famous river and assorted bridges.

Glasgow: The Postcard Collection is available from Amberley Books.