Pollokshields Heritage

Chairman’s Report AGM 2011 presented at the Fotheringay Centre 27th April 2011

  1. 160th Anniversary of the cutting of the first sod in the establishment of the garden suburb of Pollokshields. To celebrate this event Pollokshields Heritage have organised a series of events as follows:

  2. Guided bus tours of the conservation areas highlighting their significant features. These have been organized for the Sundays of 5th June, 10th July, 14th August, and 18th September. The bus will depart from Maxwell Park Station at 2.30pm. Numbers are limited; however, places are free and can be booked via the e-mail address editor@pollokshieldsheritage.org.uk.
  3. Maxwell Park Station will be open between 1-4pm on June 5th for Ready Steady Grow. We are piloting a ‘Plant Exchange Scheme’ in the ticket office and the Glasgow South Model Rail and Tram Group opening up for a display in the downstairs premises. In addition author Jack Kernahan will be doing a book signing of his revised and expanded ‘The Cathcart Circle’ the story of Southside’s commuter line and its development.

  4. Pollokshields Past and Present exhibition in Maxwell Park Station for Doors Open Day weekend on 17th and 18th September. An exhibition of images illustrating the history and heritage of the garden suburb. Contributions are welcome. Again please e-mail editor@pollokshieldsheritage.org.uk. A selection of the images will be reproduced as notelets and cards and made available later in the year.

  5. Launch of the Pollokshields Heritage trails. We are currently working with GCC on the production of three heritage trails which, like the recently published West End trails, will take the form of fold out maps. There will be trails for both halves of the garden suburb and the third, uniquely, will be a craftsmen’s trail, with information on architects, builders, craftsmen and artisans who contributed to the construction of our built heritage. We have submitted a funding application to the National Lottery’s ‘Your Heritage’ Fund and have already secured a £1950 contribution towards publication costs from the Pollokshields Area Committee. We hope to publish the trails later in the summer with the aim of getting the wealth of research information this has generated available on the internet.

  6. Lecture Series. Thanks to supportive comments at the last AGM we have continued with the lecture series during the winter and spring months of 2010 -2011 with lectures from Scottish Ballet’s Ashley Page, Carol Foreman on Glasgow’s Lost and Hidden Architecture, the Glasgow School of Art’s Digital Documentation programme by Doug Pritchard, Charles Rennie Mackintosh by Dr James MacAulay, and plans for the regeneration of Queens Park Bandstand by Dr Evelyn Silber. All the speakers have been uniformly excellent and those who have attended have enjoyed themselves. However it does seem hit and miss in terms of audience numbers with some good turn outs promptly followed by under attended ones. This lack of rhyme nor reason is a disappointing especially when the speaker has been very good. However, as education is a key part of our constitution we remain determined to purse this even when it is running at a loss. To this end we will be continuing the series in the Autumn of this year and have a shortlist of speakers we are currently pursing. If its not too much of a shameless plug I will be doing a lecture on the history of Pollokshields and how it fits into the development of gardens suburbs through out the UK, the United States and Europe.

  7. Website. We are continuing with our low key gradual overhaul of the website and I hope, if you go onto the website, you will notice how much of a change there has been from just a couple of years ago. We have ambitious plans for the website and over the next year you will notice more pages and information appearing. I’ve recently noted the collage of images on our home page appear in both a lecture by a high placed council officer and on the website of the Academy of Urbanism.

  8. City Plan 3 Public consultation on City Plan 3 is scheduled to begin in the autumn of this year. Pollokshields Heritage are designated consultees for this process so we look forward to a year of scrutinizing planning policy to determine its impact on the character of the three conservation areas. However, we also note that, as of March 2011, it has been recommended within GCC that the planning study for East Pollokshields is no longer to be considered a key priority at this stage. This is most disappointing especially considering how this was argued for, and agreed at, the City Plan 2 planning inquiry. The basis for the decision is twofold: firstly the significant slowdown in the housing market; secondly the funding for the new Pollokshields Community campus proposal which would combine school and healthcare facilities. Funding for the new health facility had been agreed in principle by the Scottish Government under the Scottish Future Trust. However, GCC now feel that the SFT does not adequately reflect the real cost of an urban school. The council believes that the campus proposal would have greatly assisted in addressing a range of cross cutting issues raised by the Pollokshields community. We agree and all the more reason for our disappointment. It seems to us that it would still be better to pursue the study now, before the housing market heats up, while there is still some scope to influence matters and before we, yet again, have to play catch up. We have written to GCC expressing our concerns.

  9. East Pollokshields Conservation Area appraisal. After more than a 5 year wait the draft conservation area appraisal for East Pollokshields has finally been made available for purposes of community consultation. Though I have been supplied a link to the appraisal’s location on the GCC website just prior to the Easter weekend due to the holiday and deadlines I’ve yet to have had the chance to peruse it but can assure you we will be commenting accordingly.

  10. The Academy of Urbanism Great Urban Neighbourhood award 2011. You may have been aware that in November of last year Glasgow won the Academy of Urbanism European City of the Year Award 2011. However, Pollokshields was also nominated for the Great Urban Neighbourhood Award 2011 as part of a shortlist of 3. Sadly we lost out to the Northern Quarter in Manchester. Nevertheless it is a significant achievement for the neighbourhood and the Academy of Urbanism published a rather interesting report on the area which they have given us permission to reproduce on our website. It’s definitely worth a read.

  11. Pollokshields Community Council. It’s unusual to give a plug to another organization at one’s AGM but I wanted to put in a word for Pollokshields Community Council. The PCC is being reconstituted currently having not been quorate since elections last autumn. They are holding a public meeting on Monday 6th June at 7pm in St Albert’s Primary School, Maxwell Drive. The purpose of the meeting is to explain the purpose of community councils and why they are important.

  12. I also want to take this opportunity to thank the other committee members for their support in particular Iain Dyer as deputy chair, Hilary Stanger our treasurer who continues to show the most extraordinary patience particularly in the face of OSCR forms, Janet Brand our secretary, Karin Currie our newsletter editor, both Karin and John Thomson for their work on Maxwell Park Station, Ann Laing for being our station gardener, both Hilary Stanger and Evelyn Lennie for organizing newsletter deliveries, David Hart for his work on the website, Roger Millar for helping orchestrate the lecture series, and Helen Barnard our planning convener for the time it takes to review all the planning submissions over the course of the last year in the three conservation areas.

  13. I hope you will also join me in thanking one of our founder members, news letter editor, and former chair Karin Currie who is resigning from the Pollokshields Heritage committee. Karin always goes beyond the call of duty and is a pillar of strength, support, font of local knowledge and key contacts and an excellent editor. Though retiring Karin will not be going far as she will still be contributing towards the writing of the three heritage trails, will be coconductor of the bus tours, will continue to oversee Maxwell Park Station as well as the 160th anniversary exhibitions, all the while being focused on the production of an international cookbook celebrating the cultural mix that has contributed to life in Pollokshields. Please join me in wishing Karin the very best for the future.

  14. Sadly I also want to add that we recently received with regret the news of the recent death of our Honary President, Dame Anne
    Maxwell Macdonald, at the magnificent age of 105, and acknowledge her interest and support for the society over many years.

  15. Finally it falls to me to introduce the speaker for tonight’s AGM lecture; Professor Alan Dunlop is one of Glasgow, and Scotland’s, most highly regarded architects. Southsiders will know him as the architect of the award winning Hazelwood School for the sensory impaired in Dumbreck but he is also well known for some of the city centre’s best modern buildings including the Sentinel and the Radisson Hotel. What you might not know is his firm were also responsible for conservation of both Maxwell Park Station and Glasgow Central Station. Alan is a superb architectural draughtsman and is doing his utmost at present to promote the need for hand drawing skills amongst young architects This has included being chairman of the judges panel for this year’s RGI / Kelly Gallery architectural sketching competition.

Niall Murphy 27th April 2011