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> Barnhill Poor House, Family History
Gallifreya
post 20th Feb 2006, 05:48pm
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Hello again all you lovely people here on the Glasgow Guide message boards. biggrin.gif I have a new question for you today. Whilst researching my Glasgow family history I have found out that a relative of mine, who lived on Society Row, died in Barnhill Poor House in 1917. Does anyone on this board know whereabouts in the city Barnhill Poor House may have been located, or anything at all about it? I am coming up to Glasgow for a few days soon to have a sentimental look around at all the places where my family were born, lived and died. I have a lot of information already, much of it thanks to you great folks here on these boards, but I never heard of Barnhill Poor House. Cheers Gallifreya
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GG
post 20th Feb 2006, 07:22pm
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Hi Gallifreya, Barnhill Poor House was renamed Foresthall House and Hospital in 1945 and was located just of Peterhill Road in the north east of the city in Balornock/Springburn. Here's some info about it I found on the Springburn Virtual Museum site:

QUOTE
The Poorhouse of the Barony Parish, known as Barnhill, opened in 1850. 'Paupers' who could not support themselves were sent here and were obliged to work at jobs such as bundling firewood, picking oakum (separating tarred rope fibres) and breaking rocks.

The hours were long and the inmates worked unpaid under extremely poor conditions, with harsh discipline and dreadful food. In 1905 the City Parish Poorhouse in Parliamentary Road closed and its inmates went to Barnhill, making it the largest poorhouse in Scotland.

In 1945 it was renamed Foresthall House and Hospital and was thereafter used as an old people's hospital and residential home. It was demolished in the late 1980s and a private housing development now stands on the site.


I can still remember the original buildings which were situated on a small hill seen behind the large stone walls from Peterhill Road. As the piece says, it was recently (5-10 years) replaced by a private housing development.

The photo from SVM is attached (in the background are some of the Red Road flats which were once the tallest housing developments in Europe and themselves possibly soon to be demolished) and here is the web address for further exploration:

http://gdl.cdlr.strath.ac.uk/springburn/spring043.htm

GG.

Heatherbank Museum of Social Work/GCU.

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GG
post 20th Feb 2006, 07:26pm
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...and more:

QUOTE
A view of the buildings and grounds at Foresthall Hospital from the main drive approaching the hospital, 1975. The buildings were erected as an extension to Barnhill Poorhouse in 1904, to provide extra staff accommodation and stables.

The 1904 extension also included the workhouse, sometimes referred to as the "test house". The suitability of applicants for relief was "tested" here - they were set to work at oakum picking, basket-weaving or some other monotonous or onerous task to "prove" they were deserving poor in desperate need for parochial assistance, and not malingerers or other undeserving cases. If they refused to work or proved "difficult", they might be shut up in a special single punishment cell.

The end of the poorhouse system came in 1930 with the repeal of the Poor Law Amendment Act, which had made the poorhouse the only legal source of relief. But it was only with the post-war reforms of the 1940s that the poor law was finally removed from the statute books. Barnhill Poorhouse became Foresthall Hospital in 1945. Under the less severe regime at Foresthall, the "test house" ceased to be a workhouse and was used instead as a venue for IQ tests.


GG.

Heatherbank Museum of Social Work/GCU.

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valros
post 20th Feb 2006, 10:09pm
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I lived in Petershill Drive Multi storeys for a couple of years (long enough!!)
I used to have to walk past Forresthall Hospital to get the train to work at Barnhill Station.

Valros
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Thomas
post 21st Feb 2006, 12:28am
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I recall passing the Forresthall Hospital on a number 8 bus from Maryhill whilst en route to visit my mother in Stobhill Hospital.

One night the bus broke down and we all had to get off and catch the next service. The number 8 bus, was in my opinion run by the Wells Fargo Stagecoach Co. I am sure it was often hijacked by Indians or some other tribes during its journey, as it often ran late, or never turned up and this night was no exception.

I was only a young boy of 12, quite unused to travelling alone on buses and very fearful of walking past the grounds of the hospital. Not because it was a 'poorhouse' as I never knew that until the last few years, but it was a large expanse of ground with trees and shrubbery all around.

It was a dark winter night, there was a fog developing and one smart ass told me to 'cut through the grounds' to get to Stobhill. Well I began that fateful journey only to get the fright of my life, as I had disturbed some 'vagrants' who were resting in the undergrowth - I bolted like lightning and made my way to Stobhill by the conventional public foot paths.

After that, each time I past Forresthall there was always an eerie sense of unease about it and although in my opinion it was a nice enough building and grounds - I was glad when they tore it down.

PS

I think the number 8 bus that was to replace the one that broke down is still driving around Glasgow - probably the driver is a mere skeleton now and if you listen you can hear his voice, 'exact fares pleaseeeeeeeeeeee'.

Ahem rolleyes.gif


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valros
post 21st Feb 2006, 12:33am
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Yes Thomas, pulling it down was the best thing they ever did, it was bad enough looking during the day but at night---woooooooooo laugh.gif

Valros
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Gallifreya
post 22nd Feb 2006, 01:11pm
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Wow, thanks for all the helpful info and pics. Sounds like a really dreadful place to end up in. My poor ancestor died in there aged 62 of chronic bronchitis which had lasted over 4 years sad.gif
Her husband however outlived her by 10 years and finally succumbed to a strangulated hernia in the Glasgow Infirmary. Funny what you find out on a death certificate.... it certainly makes me think.

Gallifreya
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*dennis*
post 23rd Apr 2007, 07:59pm
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Hello. What became of the records of the inmates of the poorhouse? Was there a cemetery there?

Regards.
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CRETESCOT
post 30th Nov 2007, 10:02am
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Hi, Just seen this topic! You can get access to and copies of Poor Law Applications at the Mitchell Library, Glasgow. I recently visited the Mitchell and would thank the staff for all their support and advice. I managed to get copies of Poor Law Applications made by my Grandfather who died in the Barnhill Poorhouse in 1917. Until viewing the 3-pages of information held at The Mitchell I knew little or nothing about my father's family - the contents of the PLA's were a real surprise! I found information about a host of family members, marriages, places of residence, occupations etc. that I had no knowledge of. If you have connections to Poorhouses in Glasgow visit the Mitchell Library - you may be surprised at what you discover! Good Luck.
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*kittenpause*
post 2nd Dec 2007, 09:59pm
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I know what people are saying about the poorhouse - but I lived next door to it as a kid and - being very young, we would sneak in to the Foresthill hospital as it was then. It had lovely green grass, plants, trees and squirrels and birds to look at as well as a kids play area in the center. I remember lots of sunny days playing in there hoping not to get caught.

We never should have been there - but it was like a wonderworld to our young eyes as we didn't have nice grass, flowers, etc in our "backs", just grass and dykes (which admittedly where fun to jump)

I remember the staff as being very nice. We once saw some older boys from our street attack a nest that had chicks in. They also took upon us wee ones for getting in their way. I remember a very nice nurse lady who chased them away and also put the nest back in the tree and said she would keep an eye on it as the mummy bird may not come back now it had been tampered with. But she would make sure the bird where ok.

I also remember that at the close nearest the hospital was a guy who kept racing pigeons. RANDOM memory!

I just want you to know there was some nice things about the place.

If you go along Petershill road, with the Red Road high rise flats at your back, you will see a big wall on the right hand side (eventually) and it is the old wall of the hospital.
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*Guest*
post 13th Apr 2008, 01:37am
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I thought I would add some to this. My Dad worked there until he retired in the early 80's. He was the last Doctor in the place before the social work Dept took it over.

I spent most of my summer holidays there hanging around while he worked and I even learned how to drive in the grounds when it was time for my learners.

The Hospital at that time had some homeless folks and the rest of it was a geriatric unit. It was like a jail by being divided into blocks. It didnt have ward numbers like Stobhill. It had wards which were called G block, H block and the like. Outside next to the bowling greens and abandoned tennis courts there were two out buildings called M block I think. Those looked on to the front of the Red Road flats.

The hospital had its own mortuary block which was at the top of the drive of you entered by the main gate house and went up the hill. I have fond memories of my Dad doing ward rounds and getting spoiled with sweeties from the nurses who still wore starchy white uniforms laugh.gif

There were huge big gardens and greenhouses in the place, but those were out of use when I was hanging round there as a kid. The other thing I remember was the thing was heated by underground steam pipes. It was always 150 degrees in the wards because the heat was so hot, there were millions of stray cats which lived in the duct work which were really nasty if you got near them.

My Dads name was Doctor Andrew MP Thomson. He is gone now like the hospital although my kid sister works now in Stobhill.
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*jamil ahmed*
post 29th Nov 2009, 09:42pm
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I grew up in glasgow from 1969 - 1973 @16 Dunhearn street. My father was a Gastroenterologist at Foresthill hospitals during that time. These pics bring back memories - now at the age of 46. I have plans to bring my kids 7 and 11 next year to visit Glasgow. Thanks for the pics of Foresthill Hospital.
Jamilahmed@gmail.com
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*graeme*
post 17th Mar 2010, 08:53pm
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my friend lives in a house that is built on the site of the old poor house .and ystarday her man took a pic of the new ceiling on her stairs, and caught a ghost of a little girl in 1840 to 50s clothes they are really scary. Im not sure how to add the pics to this but ill try if its possible if not there on my bebo at Graemet42
http://www.bebo.com/c/home/index.html
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*Tommy Owen*
post 1st Jun 2010, 09:27pm
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Doing family research showed one of my grandfathers older brothers died in Barnhill Poor House in 1918. He is described as a shipyard Labourer and lived at Provanhill Rd, so why was he in a Poor House?

Also I worked for a couple of years out of the Ambulance Station at Petershill Rd, where would Barnhill (later Foresthall Hosp) be in relation to the ambulance base?

My branch of the family have always been Greenockians so I don't know Glasow that well.
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Glesga Trotter
post 4th Jun 2010, 06:08pm
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A.Doing family research showed one of my grandfathers older brothers died in Barnhill Poor House in 1918. He is described as a shipyard Labourer and lived at Provanhill Rd, so why was he in a Poor House?

B.Also I worked for a couple of years out of the Ambulance Station at Petershill Rd, where would Barnhill (later Foresthall Hosp) be in relation to the ambulance base?

C.My branch of the family have always been Greenockians so I don't know Glasow that well.

AA.Sorry, I can't help you there.

BB.Is the Ambulance Station at the Fire Station on Midton Street ? See attached P60310-A.
Foresthall Hospital was bounded on the north and east sides by Avonspark Street, on the west side by Edgefauld Road and on the south side by Petershill Road.See attached P60310-A.

CC
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.Fair enough.



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