Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby Blindpilot » Mon Sep 01, 2008 10:24 pm

onyirtodd wrote:
Rucola wrote:Beautiful though they are, it's also hellish trying to ride a bike on them.



Enough to put a smile on a nun's face?



*smirk*
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby Vinegar Tom » Mon Sep 01, 2008 11:06 pm

Socceroo wrote:I think that most of the Tram Rails were lifted for scrap.


Chapter 5 of Bill Paterson's new book " Tales from the Back Green" details the destruction of the tram lines:

"But in the end the smokeless zones cleared the fogs and the buses and cars scuppered the trams.Our Corporation scrapped them, sent them to museums and decided to rip up the tracks and that is why the monster was now outside our close.
It turned out to be a tracked vehicle about the same disposition as a Sherman tank. It had a long jib sticking out from the front tipped with a huge steel beak. The beak was only interested in digesting one thing: our tramlines and the big granite cobbles they were set in.

It was raised about twenty feet in the air and then allowed to crash down on to the cobbles with a ghastly teeth shattering kerrang that was probably heard in Sauchiehall Street. The jib then pulled the beak back and a whole section of cobbles and tramlines rose up like a giant jig-saw. It hung there for a few seconds then crashed back to earth and the cobbles would break up. The Troglodytes moved in and cut the rails with their spitting, rasping flares which flashed dazzling light all around the tenement walls. It chewed up the tracks and then moved on. Our street now had a gaping wound running right down its centre. They filled the scar with tarmac, painted white lines down the middle and handed Alexandra Parade over to the motor car."

Call me an old Luddite , but that makes me sad. BTW if you liked that extract , buy the book - it is a cracker.
:)
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby viceroy » Wed Sep 24, 2008 8:26 pm

Pearce Lane, Govan
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby dazed_and_confused » Mon Sep 29, 2008 7:17 pm

I seem to remember my folks telling me that the cobbles from Glasgows streets were reused when some parts of Lenzie were being built in the 50s. Certainly, there are cobble-like garden walls and paths all over Oak Drive, and Moss Road.
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby Lucky Poet » Mon Sep 29, 2008 9:23 pm

Scanning this thread, I had a wee thought... There are clearly a hell of a lot of cobbles in Glasgow, like most Victorian cities (even if half are under tarmac now). The number of individual stones must be astronomical, each one cut to size, adding up to who knows how many tons, in Glasgow alone. Where did they come from though? I don't mean the quarries but the actual cutting of the setts. It was clearly an industry on a huge scale, but I've never heard it mentioned anywhere, and a cursory Google got me nowhere :?
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby Vinegar Tom » Mon Sep 29, 2008 10:32 pm

Interesting idea. Despite my interest I have no idea where they came from - someone here must know?
They don't look like local stone?

Despite that there are miles and miles of them out there because they form a hard surface ideal for the laying of modern base and wearing courses.

It wouldn't have made sense to dig them out and replace them with a modern road make up.
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby Luco » Mon Oct 20, 2008 8:01 pm

cell wrote:
Luco wrote:I think it would be great in Glasgow City Council lifted the tarmac in some parts of town to expose the cobbles underneath. In Edinburgh this sight and feel is terrific and really adds to the place.


Have you ever tried to sleep with cars zipping up and down a cobbled street? We want a well designed, functional, modern city for people to work and live in, not some frozen in time chocolate box image of a bygone world for the sake of tourists. If we keep old stuff it's because it was well designed, well built and still functional for today's world. Cobble stones on public roads do not fit this bill.


Trying to sleep? Thats it?

People manage it in cities all over Europe.
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby Lucky Poet » Thu Nov 13, 2008 8:03 pm

Bit of a sideways question, but following on from a comment on Flickr, I was reminded that there used to be wooden cobbles back in the day. I recall my old man telling me of the things in Dundee (in the 50s I guess), quite treacherous to cyclists in the wet apparently, and not much fun for cars either; they weren't very common, but a few streets had them. My point being, do any of you know if there were such things in Glasgow?
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby Vinegar Tom » Thu Nov 13, 2008 9:47 pm

LP - I might have seen what you are talking about. A few years back they were excavating for a new gas main at Eglinton Toll. There was a layer of stout timbers forming a surface under the current road make up. I was appalled at the way they just blootered their way through this stuff with the pecker ( that's what it is called apparently :o ) of the JCB.

I asked around a few folk at the time who had dug a fair number of Glasgow streets , the consensus was that they had not encountered anything like it.

The timbers seemed very well preserved , assuming they are old , anaerobic conditions would have preserved them.
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby Lucky Poet » Sun Nov 16, 2008 12:37 am

Interesting! I take it the timbers were roughly the same size as normal granite setts? Nice to hear the road crew were baffled by it - it speaks for the rarity of the things I suppose. It's good to know I wasn't just imagining the idea though, and that it wasn't just a local Dundee thing.

(And as for the pecker - fnaar fnaar!)
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby glasgowken » Sun Nov 16, 2008 2:35 am

Sort of on the subject, here's a sett car (converted from an ex 'room & kitchen' tramcar) with the GCT permanent way workers loading up.
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby Dexter St. Clair » Sun Nov 16, 2008 10:29 am

Aye, You can see that was before the Clean Air act came in. Those Hi Viz jackets could do with a scrub. I take it from the look on their faces that the photographer was using a long exposure time.
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby banjo » Sun Nov 16, 2008 11:27 am

is that paw broon in the middle?
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby dubliner » Sun Nov 16, 2008 10:49 pm

Hi glasgow
Its interesting that i was searching the web for anything on wooden cobbles and this forum came up. My mam who is in her 70's says her brother remembers robbing the wooden cobbles from Capel street Dublin to keep the family warm in winter time . It must have driven the council mad to find half the street dug up on a frosty night and in need of repair the following day. Any thoughts? or was he just joking perhaps. a dubliner :D
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Re: Glasgows Cobbled Streets and Lanes

Postby Lucky Poet » Mon Nov 17, 2008 12:23 am

Small world, dubliner :D
After a bit of Googling, it seems wooden cobbles were quite widespread. A good few people say they were used to soften the sound of horses and carriages near well-to-do houses, which makes sense I guess, though it doesn't necessarily explain their appearance in random streets of Dundee, Glasgow and Dublin. Seemingly Paris had them too, until WWII when they were torn up and used for firewood... If it happened in Paris I dare say it could've happened in Dublin too. No luck for the council of course ::):
(I dare say a big block of teak would've been quite the thing for the fire on a frosty night...)
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