Bishopton and Langbank in old picture postcards volume 2

Bishopton and Langbank in old picture postcards volume 2

Author
:   John F. Anderson
Municipality
:  
Province
:   Renfrewshire
Country
:   United Kingdom
ISBN13
:   978-90-288-4951-8
Pages
:   80
Price
:   EUR 16.95 Including VAT *

Delivery time: 2-3 weeks (subject too). The illustrated cover may differ.

   


Fragments from the book 'Bishopton and Langbank in old picture postcards volume 2'

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39. Rossland Cottages. These ivy covered buildings formerly stood in Greenock Road at the east end of the village on the site which is now occupied by Hamilton Bros. (Engineering) Ltd. Peters Motors Ltd. was formerly located on this site, but this firm has ceased operations in Bishopton. In the late 1920s the occupants of these cottages were James Kinninrnonth, Donaid Cross and James McGregor. A plumber's business was operated by James McGregor at the same address. It can be seen in this view how ne ar the road was to the cottages. However, the volume of traffic was considerably less sixty to seventy years ago than it is today, but speeding was a problem in the 1920s. In August 1923 complaints were made by local ratepayers to the Chairman of Erskine Parish Council regarding the excessive speed at which motor cars were being driven through Langbank. A similar problem of speeding motorists in Bishopton also existed at that period.

40. The Cross Roads, Bishopton. This is no longer a crossroads because of the closure of Gledstane Road. The property on the left is Fenwiek House, which was built by Henry Wilson. In 1926 this was the residence of Alexander Daw, but by 1929 it was occupied by Edward M. Brodie. It was Francis Templeman, the expert gardener and nurseryman of Little Porton, Bishopton, who laid out the garden at Fenwiek House. On the left it can be seen th at there is stilI a field where the chemist's shop and hairdressing salon are now located. Previously, these pre mises were occupied by the Commercial Bank of Scotland. The first two shops at th is location were 'Madame Jean's Emporium' and the Bishopton Pharmacy. The pharmacy also served as an optician's. The telegraph poles and the sign on the right have been removed. A zebra crossing is now located in the foreground.

Erskine U.F. Church, Bishopton.

41. Erskine U.F. Church. In 1843 a total of 451 ministers out of 1,203 in the Church of Scotland seceded to form the Free Church of Scotland because of disagreements concerning the issue of patronage. The Reverend Robert Walter Stewart, minister of Erskine, was one of their number and he became the first minister of Erskine Free Church, which was built in 1843. In 1900 there was a union between the Free Church of Scotland and the United Presbyterian Church, which resulted in the formation of the United Free Church of Scotland. Thus the Free Church in Bishopton became a United Free Church. In 1929 the United Free Church joined in union with the Church of Scotland. The U.F. Church in Bishopton became a Church of Scotland congregation known as Bishopton Rossland. It remained as such until 1971 when there was a union with Erskine Parish Church and the united congregation became known as Bishopton Erskine. Bishopton Rossland now functions as the Church Centre.

42. Erskine Parish Church. The minister of Erskine Parish Church from the 1850s to the 1940s and their period of service at this charge were as follows: Rev. Thomas McKie (1852-1871); Rev. John McIlwraith (1871-1892); Rev. William Ferguson (1893-1913); Rev. D. Melville Stewart (1913-1920); Rev. Donaid F. Ferguson (1921-1929); and Rev. David Y. Robertson (1929-1941). Two former ministers of Erskine deserve special mention. these being the Rev. Walter Young, D.D., who was minister from 1770 until 1814, and the Rev. Andrew Stewart, minister from 1815 unti! 1838. Dr. Young was a distinguished musician, who played the piano, violin and flute. He also arranged several psalm tunes for the Church of Scotland, in addition he wrote 'On the Influence of Poetry and Music upon the Highlanders' , which was published in 1781. The building of the present church began to be erected at the close of Dr. Young's ministry. The Reverend Andrew Stewart had both medical and legal gualifications. His publications were on medical, legal and botanical matters. In October 1809 Dr. Stewart married the Hon. Margaret Stewart, the eldest daughter of Alexander, 10th Lord Blantyre. He was succeeded as minister of Erskine in 1838 by his son, the Reverend Robert Walter Stewart. who became Moderator of the General Assembly of the Free Church ofScotland in 1874.

43. Erskine Parish Church. In April 1915 centenary services over three Sundays were held in the church in celebration of the completion of the one hundredth anniversary of the present building. The preacher at the re-dedication service was the Reverend Dr. John White of the Barony Church, Glasgow. He had been much favoured for the charge of Erskine during the vacancy of 1893, but in the event it was the Rev. William Ferguson who was appointed. Dr. White was one of Scotland's greatest churchmen and was the architect of the union between the United Free Church and the Church of Scotland in 1929. The church was built during 1813-1814, the architect being David Hamilton. In 1902-1903 a low octagonal vestry was built on to the south-east of the church. Jean Breckenridge (1764-1841), sister-in-Iaw of Robert Burns, is buried in the churchyard here with her second san, James. Her husband Gilbert Burns, brother of Scotland's National Bard, was previously the factor on the Blantyre estates in East Lothian.

44. Our Lady of Lourdes. The building of this chapel in Old Greenock Raad, Bishopton was completed in 1926. Much of the work involved in its construction was voluntary. Beföre it was built, Roman Catholics who lived in the village, had to go to St. Fillan's Chapel in Houston for worship. In 1927 the Reverend J. McDonald is recorded as being the priest at our Lady of Lourdes. However, in 1929 the priest at the chapel was the Reverend Peter Bonnyman. He had been appointed as priest-in-charge of St. Fillan's Chapel, Houston, in 1927. The Reverend Robert W. Stewart pointed out th at there were only four Roman Catholics residing in the parish of Erskine in 1842. There was a growth in the Catholic population of the parish as a result of the continued residence of some of the Irish navvies, who remained after the completion ofthe railway.

45. Formakin House. The Formakin Estate was formed out of four farms which John A. Holms began to acquire in about 1902. The building of the mansion-house did not begin until 1910. After the roof was put on in 1912, na further work was undertaken on the house, and the interior has remained undecorated since that time. In this view it can be seen th at the gatelodges have been built. The bell-shaped roofs of the gatelodges were designed in a sirnilar style to the roof of the Garden Pavilion. It can be seen that the tall bothy block has not been erected. The house on the extreme left is the seventeenth century miller's cottage which was restored by Sir Robert Lorimer. No part of the building work of Formakin was put out to contract. Mr. Holms acted as his own builder and employed Mr. James Grieve as master of works. Mr. Grieve bought the rnaterials, employed the workmen and paid them. He thus operated in a similar manner to a master of works of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.

46. Formakin House. Mr. John Augustus Holms can be seen on the right of this picture on the occasion when the foundation stone of Formakin House was laid on 6th June 1911. The lady in the wide-brimmed hat is Miss Holms, sister of Mr. Holms. There were about thirty guests present on this occasion and after being received by Mr. Holms, the company proceeded to the front door of the mansion-house led by two pipers from the 6th Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. At that location Mr. Holms placed a bottie in a cavity below the foundation stone. The bottle contained a written statement which recorded that the building of Formakin House was commenced on 13th March 1911, also information regarding the architect, Mr. (later Sir) Robert Lorimer , a copy of the current Glasgow Stock Exchange Share List copies of 'the Scotsman', 'Glasgow Herald' , 'Paisley and Renfrewshire Gazette' and all the current coinage of the realm. Mr. Robert Lorimer presented Miss Holms with a silver trowel and she spread the lime with it and the foundation stone was lowered.

47. Formakin House. This is a view of Formakin through the archway beside the small pavilion at the corner of the Fountain Garden in 1913. John A. Holms suggested that certain alterations should be made to Lorimer's design of this building after work on it had begun. These alterations were made. The windows had to be lowered in order to improve the view as in the original design it had not been possible for people to look out of the window while sitting down. In addition, the proposed wooden ceiling was changed to a plaster ceiling which was based on the vine and grape motif to be found at Kellie Castie, near Pittenweem in north-east Fife. Holms was a noted horticulturalist and had a particular expertise in rhododendrons. He was a founder member of the Rhododendron Association. Holms also planted different varieties of trees on the estate in order to have woodlands which were appropriate for the 17th century design of the mansion-house. The gardens of Formakin contained some rare flowers such as the Chinese roses which we re similar to those th at grew in the Imperial Gardens in Peking. There we re also shrubs from India. In 1927 Holms established a commercial nursery on the estate wh ere heathers, flowers and shrubs we re grown.

48. Formakin House trom the north-east, The fountain on the broad sloping lawn provides an interesting focal point in this view of 1913. Water formerly issued from the mouths of the four carved stone lions. The low buildings in the foreground were designed as the service wing. In 1908 Mr. Holms had maintained that a basement was essential for the service rooms. However , Sir Robert Lorimer was not in agreement with hirn as he considered it out-af-date for domestic staff to he eonfined to basements. The designs above the dormer windows of the service wing were suggested by Mr. Holms and derived from motifs which he had observed in George P. Bankart's 'The Art of the Plasterer'. Part of the arehway which leads to the entranee door ean be seen on the right of this photograph. Christopher Hussey writing in 1931 maintained that Formakin marked the peak of Lorimer's development in the domestie range, and was probably the finest expression of modern Scottish arehiteeture.

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