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Glasgow has five city parks - Bellahouston, Kelvingrove, Botanic Gardens, Pollok and Glasgow Green - and 12 district parks, including Queen's, Springburn, Victoria and Tollcross. There are also 57 local parks.
  • Do you have any fond memories of Glasgow's parks?
  • Which is your favourite?
  • Which one did/do you visit most often?
As a child i spent many happy hours in alexander park
it was there i rolled my easter egg ,played on the swings
fished in the pond. Many happy what seemed then to be long hot summer days. biggrin.gif biggrin.gif
oh yes GG as a Glasgow kid I was brought up to appreciate our parks.Had grandparents that took me to Bellahouston ,man do I remember all those steps up to a statue for the 1938 empire exhibition.Went back last summer and was totally destroyed new trees had been planted that blocked the amazing view..
Oh Betty you are setting off memories here.Remember my Gran telling me about painted eggs and rolling them at Bellahouston'.Got so much stuff I wanna ask them.
nae chocolate eggs back then , hard boiled
and wur mammy's painted them , but it was fun rolleyes.gif rolleyes.gif
big al
Always remember Maryhill park for the huge open spaces at the back of the park - they seemed to go on and on for ever - it was just a super park - I loved Dawsholm Park for the nature aspects - the birds and squirrels and the plants and trees - it was a great place for adventure - I loved the Botanic Gardens - Kibble Palace was just a different experience for someone who didn't have a garden - votes of thanks to the Glasgow people who established the concept in the city - its what makes it still a dear green place....
wee mags
to me Maryhill park was where you went to roll your easter eggs, your mammy jist boiled in the tea [it made them brown]
and we would watch the men and women bowling it had a nice bowling green ,the botanlic gardens ,what can you say is there such a plale in all the world we used to walk there from Kelvindale Rd doon the dale, through the monkey park, passed the old quansit huts to a wonderland and the bandstands on a Sunday were we lucky to have such a place so near to us ,I remember seeing a banana tree there that was one of my fav places and I always spoke about it to my children,I have such happy memories of it . biggrin.gif
I have memories of Kelvingrove Park from my last visit to Glasgow in 84" it was very near where I stayed and I think this is why I remember it so well and then of my visits to the Botanic gardens which I have some lovely photos.
The only Glasgow park I ever saw was naturally my favourite, & that was Tollcross Park. I've mentioned this park in other places on the board. The places I lived in [so many too!] didn't have gardens, although a few houses I passed on the way to school did, so Tollcross Park was an area of much beauty in my eyes. There was a glasshouse filled with flowering tuberous begonias & other exotic plants, & there was a Children's Museum with a marvellous, if somewhat tatty, tableau of "Who Killed Cock Robin - & I seem to remember, though I could be wrong about this, a stuffed & mounted large stag. When I lived in Shettleston, we used to roll our Easter eggs down the hill in Tollcross Park, this was a great treat, & the eggs had been hard-boiled with onion skins which turned the shells bright yellow. Then we'd roll down the hill ourselves & come home all dirty with skinned knees. When my Italian grandmother visited Scotland, she wanted dandelion leaves for cooking, they tasted horrid, maybe I'd think differently now, cos then I was ill-disposed towards them - I'd be sent to Tollcross Park on this errand & endure that taunts of "pee-the-bed" from other kids there who were playing kick-the-ball in the park.

The park was surrounded by massed rhododendron bushes with their large flower trusses, and there was a large "monkey-puzzle" tree which seemed so exotic to my eyes - the same trees are common beachside plantings in NSW! I wonder if the park would seem so huge to me now - it extended from Tollcross Rd to Shettleston where the steamie used to be. When we moved to Tollcross, I'd walk through the park on my way to Wellshot Rd school, always choosing different ways through it, & did the same when at Eastbank Academy, so as to admire the various flowerbeds, especially the marvellous roses. Invariably I'd be chased away by the cranky park-keeper, & to this day I wonder if those attitudes towards children were what caused park vandalism by the kids. But my own admiration of the flower plantings there remained with me, & stood me in good stead when I planted gardens of my own.

Sorry for the boring botanical dissertation, but it was the Tollcross Park plantings that stuck in my mind - I'm sure there were swings & other play areas there, but I have no memory of these!
I used to go to Rouken Glen to roll hard boiled eggs at easter,then when I was older used to cycle there to hire the rowing boats.In winter it was skating on the frozen lake What a fun time in that park.
Margaret P
The best park I remember is Elderpark in Govan my grandad lived in Elderpark st cool.gif
Queens Park was very close to where I lived and I have some great memories of it. It always seemed so big but I suppose when you are little, lots of things seem big.

Firstly there was the pond where you could sail your model boats or go out on a paddle boat. Then there was the "pitch and putt" course and the bowling greens. Bowling was always seen as an old mans game but someone gave me and my mates a little try and after that we played quite a bit.

There was the flagpole, the highest point for miles where I used to take my grandad's binoculars and look across to Shawfield stadium and Parkhead. I watched an episode of Taggart the other year and saw someone get shot there.

There was the green houses which were well looked after at the time. There was "hill 60" where you might endulge in a bit of "winching" with the girls.

My earliest memories are of the pony rides. There used to be an oval dirt track just inside the main Victoria Road entrance where you could ride on a pony or take a pony & trap ride. This all dissappeared in the mid 60's.
When I was really wee we lived on Burghead Drive in Linthouse. So the park we used to go to was Elder Park. I don't remember too much, only that my parents would go to the Elder Park Library. I grew up close to Bellahouston Park where there used to be donkey rides. I don't recall ever rolling Easter eggs, though. Later, my mother moved to Sannox Gardens which is across the road from Alexandra Parade Park. Each time I visit her I'm so impressed with how well the gardens are maintained. There's also a pond, where we always go to feed the ducks. Over the years whenever I'd be visiting my brothers and their children would meet at my mother's and we'd all trek across the road complete with slices of bread. The park gives my mother so much pleasure as she can sit at the window and gaze onto it. Also, she likes to go for a stroll and admire the beautiful flowers, then she sits on a bench just outside the park overlooking the Parade. That way she gets to see all the people entering and leaving, and all the hustle and bustle of the Parade.
Here's another photo of Alexandra Parade Park. This is of the entrance. I have another of the fountain, but I think I can only upload one photo per reply. Och. sad.gif
Here's the fountain in Alexandra Parade Park.
Alexandra Park brings back so many memories. Like Betty rolling my egg, fishing for the little taddies. Carrying them home in the jam jars. Betty do you remember the bandstand. Its funny I can remember long summer days, walking up there with my pal and our doll prams. Another story ,used to walk through the park home from St Thomas's school, came out at Sannox Gardens. One winter day I took so long that me and my wee pal got locked in.That was back in the days when wee girls could walk through the park. These days have long gone.
ananie laurie
laugh.gif Where about in Elderpark Street did your Granda live Margaret,????
I remember Elderpark very well, I remember the beautiful roses that grew at the entrance from Langlands Rd beside the libarary, I believe a lot of the Govan Rd entrance has been change now, the little swing park and the sand pit has gone, I have been told, have not been there for a few years<<<<<<<<
the rouken glenpark on the south side of glasgow, or east renfrewshire, is where I rememebr going on our sunday school picnics, its still a nice park to-day
cool.gif Springburn Park is my favourite, Sunday after Sunday school my dad would take my wee sister and I to the park and we would watch grandad play bowls, feed the ducks and have a wee boat ride with grandad. wub.gif
Lot of building going on at alexandra park just now i think its a school, as you say isobel way back then kids could play safely in the parks not now mores the pity i also went to st thomas's school in riddrieDo you remember the boat pond you it was hard work paddling those boats but we loved every minute of it Then came the cry c/min number nine yir times up biggrin.gif
Jim D
I remember walking up the Broomloan Road to Bellahouston Park in the summer. playing football near the band stand (now a dry ski slope). Rolling my painted hard boiled egg down the hill at the Empire Exhibition Monument at eastertime. A few decades later, I used the same hill to do "hill-runs" while training.

Now the park has a renovated sports centre, swimming pool, astro turf hockey pitch etc.
Great post - also share the same memories as Paul G re Queen's Park. I remember once my Dad had to plunge into pond to help a little girl that had fallen in.

Always had a "pokey hat" from the vendor at the Shawlands exit.

Making daisy chains and watching the entertainment at the bandshell.

Used to play jacks at Charlie's Swing Park near Queen's Park.
George Muir
When the family lived in Govanhill, Queen's Park was the nearest of the parks and we went there to hear the music at the bandstand. My father insisted later that when I was very young he took me and my sisters to see Glenn Miller and his Orchestra perform there, early in the war. I do remember that during the war there was a barrage balloon anchored up near the flagpole. In my teenage years I missed the parkie's closing whistle and accidentally got locked in the park with a companion. We climbed the big iron gate on the Pollokshaws Road side and got out. Years later, I happened to meet up with the companion (who was by now a clippie on the trams) and she told me that whenever she passed by the gate on the caurs, she would say to herself "How the H--- did I ever manage to climb that thing"!
this is for thistle,
can you tell me when your dad fished the little girl out of the pond, i too was fished out by a kind man, this was around 65-67, sorry cannot remember exact year as i was just little when it happenedi was wearing litle white ankle socks, birthday sandals and had a knitted cardigan on over my dress.
we used to go there and meet our grandmother(on our birth mothers side)once a week, we loved it there.
Hi Isa: thanks for your post - we came to Canada in 1957 so it would have been around 1954/55 - must have been another good Samaritan (lol).

We visited the Borders area last year and had a day trip to Glasgow - just had to have a walkabout in the park - very quiet though not like the "old" days. Just a few folk walking their dogs.

Catch you later...thistle smile.gif
Enjoying the 'parks' postings. Have been to most of them many years ago. But no one has mentioned Ruchill park. Is it still there? As I recall it was up the street and across the canal from Firhill.
QUOTE (PaulG @ 16th Aug 2003, 11:35 AM)
Queens Park was very close to where I lived and I have some great memories of it. It always seemed so big but I suppose when you are little, lots of things seem big.

Firstly there was the pond where you could sail your model boats or go out on a paddle boat. Then there was the "pitch and putt" course and the bowling greens. Bowling was always seen as an old mans game but someone gave me and my mates a little try and after that we played quite a bit.

There was the flagpole, the highest point for miles where I used to take my grandad's binoculars and look across to Shawfield stadium and Parkhead. I watched an episode of Taggart the other year and saw someone get shot there.

There was the green houses which were well looked after at the time. There was "hill 60" where you might endulge in a bit of "winching" with the girls.

My earliest memories are of the pony rides. There used to be an oval dirt track just inside the main Victoria Road entrance where you could ride on a pony or take a pony & trap ride. This all dissappeared in the mid 60's.

Well Paul G you brought back memories of Queens Park as it was also one of my favorites. I remember waiting for the first time the pond froze over and we would all go Ice Skating and like all the other postings roll our Easter Eggs down hill 60. I think that all Gladwegens hand painted their Easter Eggs I haven't been back in Scotland for years . You said that it had changed in the 60s what did you mean? cool.gif
Hi Paul G well you brought back memories of Queens Park it's many years since I was last there but I can see my big brother sailing his boat on the pond and panicking that he would'nt get it back but always did. Then in the winter when the pond froze over we would all go ice skating on it. And last but not least rolling our Easter Eggs down hill 60. and not forgetting a pony ride. Reading the postings I think that every household was up the night before Easter boiling the eggs in the teapot to make them brown then painting them. Happy Memories Meg
I liked Maryhill park playing onthe putting green with my pals and betting thrupence a hole ,and playing on the pitch and putt at dawshome park ,i used to play junior fitba at dawshome park where they had a lot of pitches and when i was older taken my girlfreind when i was skint round the Botanic gardens there was lots of little quite areas wub.gif
Ruchill Park is still there Jock but I am ashamed to admit I have never been in it and I don't live all that far away. unsure.gif
Thanks scotslad. Nice to know Ruchill is still there, I used to play fitba on the ash pitches there.
ANANIE LAURIE, I lived at 239 Langlands Rd. across from Elder park, between Uist St. and the Vogue cinema. My uncle lived on Fairfield St. BETTY & ISOBEL bring back memories of Alexandra park, rolling my Easter egg, (hard-boiled and coloured with crayons). I lived at the Toonheid end of Alexandra Parade and often walked out to the park with my penny cane and net to fish for "baggie-minnies". Do you remember the duck pond?
Thanks to TUMCHIE for the pics.
Margaret P
ananielaurie sorry to take so long to answer you my granda lived 9 elderpark st when I was back 2yrs ago I went over there all new houses the park is still there but not as big as I remember do you remember the big big pond in the middle its still there
Hi to all, this is my son Paul in Queens park and that's Victoria Rd inb the background. Long time ago, my son is now 38 yrs old and married with little girl called Chloe Jane. cool.gif

Anne, Perth Aussieland
Hi anne:
Do you remember the Ice Cream shop (I think it was called the Queen's Cafe) just outside the park on the right hand side on Victoria Road - great rasperry ices (to die for!!!)
Thanks for all the grand memories! I used to go to Rouken Glenn park....was a lovely place! we rolled our Easter eggs and had jam sandwiches and a bottle of lemonade for a picnic.We would always wander off and explore, and were always being chased by the Parkie!blowing his wee whistle!!.Then as we got older out in the rowing boats with our latest fling!
Sunday school picnics were grand indeed, with boxed lunches, but not as much fun ,because our mothers had us all dressed up! and we dairen't get any muck on our sunday outfits!!And we had to be on our best behaviour too!
Queens Park and Elderslea park were also favourites of mine as a young lass...Used to walk there on a Sunday while courtin' lol then we would go to the local flea pit and watch a horror movie!
What a great topic. Alexander Parade park was where we went and I just loved the duck pond. Betty and Isobel, memories when you mentioned going to St. Thomas's school in Riddrie. My mammy was a cleaner in that school and every summer someone had to take the jannie's job while he was on vacation. My mammy did it a lot and that was how we spent the summer. Going in to all the classrooms and kidding on we were teachers. Great days. smile.gif
Hello Jock for some reason i didnt see your post about ruchill park. It is still therre and just looks the same. Every time i go home i go there and go up the flagpole just for the view of maryhill. It is great.You can still walk over the hill to ruchill. Used to slide down the hill towards firhill in the winter on a coal shovel, nae toboaggin. In the summer we would go doon the hill from the park to firhill on a roller skate with a book on it,sitting.The days were never long enough then and everything had its season. Fitba turned tae cricket wi wickets painted or pipe clayed on the wall.We had bools, peever, skipping ropes when we wanted tae impress the lassies. they were better than us at that ONE thing. Releaso,hoppin charlie all the different variations from calling out filmstars names to types of cigarettes. Chappin oan doors sometimes getting one person oan every landin and then shoutin oot and everybody had tae chap a door oan the landing an run like hell. Especially the wan oan the tap flair. Learned tae jump ten stairs at a time dain that.Ach better stoap the memories are a' jist too good........andra
Hi thistle46, yes I do remember that cafe and the ice cream was great, we lived in Allison st accross from the Police station and up a bit, there was a lane and next to the lane was a bakery that made the greatest cakes and pies, we could smell it all day long. Across from us was a Mini Mart and the guy who owned it was murdered because he was a poof and he splashed his money around in the pub that was across from that cafe. It could have been the Victoria Arms, seniors moment !!!! unsure.gif

Anne Perth Aussieland
Andy, chappin on doors also was fun when we tied the handles of two opposing doors together then chapped on both doors.
Dexter St. Clair
Thanks to Ronnie on Hidden Glasgow

There is a rather nice collection of cigarette cards with scenes of the 1938 Empire Exhibition in Bellahouston Park at the New York Public Library:

In my mind you can't beat Bellahouston Park. Got a few tales to tell about that. biggrin.gif
I was fortunate to live between Elder Park and Ballahouston Prk, but the Elder was my favourite, they had a pond where you could use a net and catch tadpoles , and on the summer evenings all the old guys used to bring oot these beautiful racing boats that they had made and then they would race them up and down the pond, near one of the gates ther was one of those giant draught boards where the auld yins used poles with big hooks to move them around , there used to be big crowds watching them with there aye and naw hints to the players.
bellahouston was generally the posh park, this is where you walked your collie dug or had a stroll after church , i got used to it later when out walking with the lassies
All parks have something to offer, but everyone will have a favourite and mine is Kelvingrove. I was there at the weekend and it was as busy as ever. Sadly there was no ice cream van to be seen. Sadder still is the state of the old bandstand (apologies if there is a thread dedicated to it).
Here is an old piece of film from 1926 (well before our time) showing the bandstand as it should be.

And by way of contrast have a look at a more recent film by Abandoned Scotland..
Jim D
A place I that I don't remember visiting as a child was Glasgow Green. As I got older I've been there countless times and always enjoy it. The People's Palace, the terracotta fountain, the drying green with the old clothes poles. There is also an adventure park.
The place is a great asset to the city for holding outdoor event such as rock concerts, fireworks displays and other events such as the World Pipe Band Championships each august, which this year is over 2 days.
Like you Jim I had never been to Glagow Green until I was grown up and moved to the East End. It has some great events held there. I have a friend who has a flat over looking the green with a balcony it's a fab view point for events in the summer whilst siiting with a nice glass of wine.

My favourite park however will always be pollok park it has so much to see with not one but two musiums in it's grounds as well as horses and cattle. There as some fab woodland walks with lots of places to explore.
If I am down I drive over for a wee visit and the old familiar smell in the gardens at pollok house cheers me up no end. When I was wee and it was free I used go around pollok house and pretend it was mine.
I could go on about this place all day but get yourelf over there and see for yourself. You would need a whole day though as it's massive.
I used to go to Ruchill park and play football with my mates and of course roll
our Easter eggs down the hill.
I remember once my mother had saved up her kensitas coupons to get me a new pair of trousers.
I wore them for the first time, and i was running down a steep hill, and as the momentum got going
i suddenly realized i could not stop.
I ended up on the gravel path skint my knees and tore a hole in my new trousers.
When i went home crying i thought i was going to get a bit of sympathy as i showed my mother my bloodied knee. She was not impressed and said. "Skin can grow back, but cloth costs money"
It was a great park in the summer and in the winter when the steep hills froze over the kids would slide down them in the tray they stole from the kitchen.
The parkie used to chase us off the grass, and we would spend all summer up there.
It is a shame like everything else the park is full pf dog shit and discarded needles.
But happy time we had.
Purplefan my visits to Ruchill park go back over 50 odd years,rolled my easter eggs there but now it is a sadly neglected place and really a crime the way the councilhave let it decay.This is the overgrown path to the flag pole.
This is another view of the"panoramic views" of the city from the flagpole.Overgrown everywhere.
Tollcross was our local park, just up the hill from Shettleston Road. I remember it being well tended and our favourite place was the children's museum with the famous " Who Killed Cock Robin" case. From the red blaze football pitches there was a great view over the city.

Haapy memories also of getting the "wee bus" (No 30 Carmyle to North Carntyne) to the back of the Riddrie Vogue, and walking along Cumbernauld Road & Ally Parade to Ally Park. If we were in funds it was the paddle boats - if not we had our jeely jaurs and string to fish for baggy minnows or tadpoles. Pieces and jam and a bottle of ginger, or maybe just tap water added to a perfect afternoon. 6 or 7 year old at the time !
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