Historical tours in the Clyde Valley

It’s scary how much has changed within my lifetime. 1983 (when this was published) doesn’t seem that long ago. I’d also question their definition of the ‘Clyde Valley’ but that’s being pedantic.

This is a series of tours mostly designed for drivers happy to wander around Lanarkshire looking for old stuff. Sounds right up my street, and in fact, I’ve covered a lot of the ground in this wee booklet already, but there are still plenty of surprises. I had no idea there was a broch in Lanarkshire, or a souterrain! They’re clearly in view on the OS map, but I’ve not looked in that direction in much detail before. And the book also suggests that Thankerton and Lamington are relatively modern planned villages; if I’d given it any thought I’d have assumed medieval at least.

I love older publications like this for their mentions of existing buildings, not just ruins. Buildings still in use are overlooked too often.  I find it amazing  how many structures have been destroyed within my generation, like Coltness House in Wishaw, and numerous railway lines and bridges. It’s surprising that anything survives from the deep past when we seem so intent on destroying so much of our present. Do the survivors remain by luck, or because they were special, or were there originally so many that statistically one or two were bound to make it to the present?

It’s also intriguing to see what has been missed out from the tours: plenty Covenanter graves are ignored, for example.

At any rate, hopefully it won’t be too long before I can drag my recalcitrant family out for another tour. Snow allowing!