Posted in A to Z

H is for the HielanMan’s Umbrella

centraljamaicastDuring the latter Highland clearances in the 19th century, around 30,000 Gaelic speaking displaced people arrived in Glasgow looking for work. They dispersed all over the city but, usually on Saturdays, they would meet together under the railway bridge which carried the trains from Central Station across Argyle Street. Given the amount of rain Glasgow gets, the bridge soon became known as the HielanMan’s Umbrella.

The area underneath has long had problems with pollution and poor air qualiy due to the amount of traffic pouring under it. The entrance to Central Station there usually smells of piss. But I believe they have tried to tart it up since I was last there.




Writer, photographer, creative fantasist.

6 thoughts on “H is for the HielanMan’s Umbrella

  1. See, this kind of thing makes me rather jealous. Europe and just about everywhere has so damned much history. Random overpasses have got fancy names due to interesting things that happened there, etc. My home town of two million had a grand total of 100 residents at the end of the 19th century. There’s not a single building old enough to have sheltered any displaced Highlanders, although a fair number of their descendants, self included, did end up there.

  2. Isn’t that where the Belfast Bus used to leave as well? Sauchiehall St to Stranraer to Belfast. Couldn’t get through the crowds/bus queue during the marching season.

  3. Nettie – Oh, that’s really interesting! I always find it fascinating how different places get different names like that.

  4. This is really interesting, I’ve read a bit about the highland clearances but didn’t know so many ended up in Glasgow. It’s really sad.

What's your opinion?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s