Welcome to the History Channel. We have extensive pages showing the history of Healthcare, Shipbuilding, Education, Singer's Sewing Machine Factory, Housing and the Clydebank Blitz.

To view some fantastic Scottish history captured on film from the BBC click here :
BBC History (Broadband Only)

The Making of Clydebank


The various parishes and villages that are now part of Clydebank have been settled for many hundreds of years. As an example, ruins of the Roman Antonine Wall were found on the hill of GoldenHill Park in Duntocher, and stone outcrops carved with druid-like symbols can be found north of the area that is now Faifley.

In medieval times Old Kilpatrick was the centre of religious worship for the earldom of Lennox, and for many centuries it was reported to be the birthplace of St. Patrick (Kil-patrick translates to Saint Patrick). Old Kilpatrick once held the title of the Burgh or Regality, and the lands were gifted to Paisley Abbey around the 13th Century.

Clydebank as a town did not truly exist until 1886, when the Thomson brothers moved their shipbuilding yard from Govan to a spare bit of green pasture (at what is now the UIE/Kvaerner yard) and setup the
Clyde Bank Shipbuilding Yard.

Over time this came to be known as the
Clydebank Shipbuilding Yard, and the tenements built around it as The Clydebank Tenements, then finally over time it came to be known simply as Clydebank.

Clydebank became a Police Burgh in 1886, and included the land from Mountblow road east to Yoker Mill road (the east boundary of Clydebank which is still in place) and from the River Clyde north, to the land bordered by what is now the "Singer" railway line. Continued growth of the town between 1886 and 1975 resulted in Radnor (in 1906), Parkhall and Mountblow (in 1925), Whitecrook (in 1937), Faifley (in 1949) and finally Duntocher and Old Kilpatrick (in 1975) becoming part of the Burgh of Clydebank.

To view an old map of Clydebank click here :
Old Map of Clydebank

Several important factors led to the establishment of Clydebank as a Burgh way back in 1886. One of those factors was that the Parochial Board of Old Kilpatrick was unable to provide proper public health facilities such as drainage and sewage disposal.

A decision was therefore taken that for the town and it's people to prosper, a fully established Police Burgh would have to be formed and run in the correct manner. Burgh Commissioners were elected on 21st December that year, some local people expressed their concern that they might unfairly reflect the interests of local employers, or small businessmen.

Given that the Commission was very important to the success and growth of Clydebank, it isn't really surprising that few non employers or businessmen became Commissioners.


The Population Explosion

When the Burgh was formed, Clydebank had a population of just over 5,000 in 1886. By 1914 this had risen dramatically to over 43,000. Clydebank gained the nickname of the 'risingest burgh' because of the pace of the towns's growth.

This population expansion (mainly due to the new Singer Sewing Machine factory, and the rapidly developing shipyards) made great demands on the burgh for provision of general amenities such as housing, water, education, welfare and leisure & recreation.

Town Boundaries
Due to a severe lack of land for new housing, Clydebank's boundaries were extended in 1906 to take in a further 542 acres, about 2,000 houses and almost 10,000 people into the burgh.