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284 May 2018 - Gryffe Advertizer

The Advertizer - Your local community magazine to the Gryffe area. The Advertizer is a local business directory including a what's on guide and other local information and an interesting mix of articles.

24 LOCAL history the

24 LOCAL history the advertizer Renfrewshire Tile Works 2 In rural areas, Brick and Tile Works produced fire clay ‘tiles’ for draining fi elds. Like any mineral, fireclay needed skill to identify. Rather than the boulder clay which lies under much of the area, fireclay occurs in beds, deposited during glaciation, or much longer ago, between coal seams. Fireclay was commonly worked speculatively, if encountered during the digging of quarries for other minerals, including limestone and sandstone. At Seedhill Quarry, fireclay was mixed with sand at the top of the quarry, and a little ash, to produce wire-cut bricks. Most tile works also produced quantities of bricks. Drain tiles were heavy and quite fragile, and before the arrival of the railway, they could not easily be carried far, thus had to be made locally. Estate owners sought a local supply of fireclay to make tiles for their own farms. Renfrewshire had more than thirty fireclay works, the majority of which were rural Brick and Tile Works. In the lower Gryfe area, from the 1830s, tile works were set up at Gladston near Bishopton, Fauldshead south of Renfrew, Fulwood Bridge and Glenshinnoch. Initially the clay was quarried from pits beside the works. At the beginning of summer, tile production commenced, with softening of the clay and adding sand, to get the right consistency for moulding. In the early years the tiles were moulded by hand. To prevent distortion when firing, the moulded tiles were dried in racks in long sheds with wooden louvered walls. Gladston Brick and Tile Work shows the typical features of a tile works: clay pits, rows of drying sheds, and the long production shed. Once the demand for tiles passed, Gladston (later known as Dargavel Brickworks) specialised in brickmaking. Once the open clay pits were exhausted, the clay was high enough quality to make mining economic. The site was later incorporated into the Royal Ordnance factory. Many millions of tiles were produced and most remain hidden under fi elds and housing developments. Anybody digging a deep trench in their garden will have encountered them. The oldest hand-made tiles often contain the fi ngerprints of the folk who made them, nearly 200 years ago. © 2018, Stuart Nisbet, Renfrewshire Local History Forum Johnstone History Society The History Society’s May meeting is on the 8th as usual at 7.30 in the Masonic Hall Collier Street. Professor Richard Oram of Stirling University is our speaker and his subject is “Plagues ‘the pluk ‘and Precipitation. Disease and Climate in late Medieval Scotland .As this sounds like a very interesting topic we would hope for a good attendance. Visitors and members will all be made most welcome .Last night’s April meeting was both interesting and very enjoyable and well attended with one or two new faces. Iain Murray our Chairman having been involved in the last project was able to add lots of inside information. The Museum is open as usual Wednesday Friday and Saturday from 10.30 till 4pm. We have a number of books and publications on sale in the Museum and these can all be purchased online at johnstonehistory. org and can be paid for via PayPal. Supreme Sacrifice Bridge of Weir and the Great War 100 years ago this month – May 1918 Private Ernest Murray, 9th Cameronians (Scottish Rifles) Private Edward Shedden, 1st Cameronians (Scottish Rifl es) Private William Fulton Houston, Royal Engineers attached 9th Prince of Wales’s (North Staffordshires) May 1918 was a bad month for Bridge of Weir. The Germans were still pushing on with their Spring Offensive, but the rate of advance was slowing down. By mid-May Haig began to sense that the worst was over and the lines could be held. But the Germans were desperate and the fighting continued to be intense and vicious, with gas being used liberally. Ernest Murray was a joiner, the son of William, a leather worker from Arbroath, and Ann Davie. The family later moved to Bridge of Weir. He attested under the Group scheme and awaited his call up, which was February 1916 when he was 23. By late April 1918 he was with the 9th Cameronians in the 9th (Scottish) Division defending the Ypres salient at Kemmel Ridge which suffered bombardments of shells and gas. He was wounded and died in a Boulogne hospital on 7th May. Edward Shedden was born in Glasgow, the fourth of seven sons and one daughter born to Robert Shedden, a leather worker from Kilmarnock and Emily Kelly from Greenock. By 1914 he was a professional golfer at Ralston and playing well enough to enter the Open Championship, having previously been assistant at Old Ranfurly. He volunteered in November 1914, survived the Somme though wounded, and in 1918 was with the 1st Cameronians, 33rd Division, in the front line to the south-west of Ypres. On the morning of 8th May, a German attack with high explosive and gas drove the line back, but the Cameronians were ordered to counter-attack the same day. In the engagement they lost many men, and their commanding officer was captured, but they played their part in holding the line. Edward Shedden’s body was lost in the mud, missing presumed dead. William Houston’s father was from Wigtownshire, and after an itinerant life as a roadman, living partly in Broomward, Bridge of Weir, returned to Kirkinner, Wigtown as a farmer. But William, by then a joiner, stayed behind and married Elizabeth McIntosh in 1911. They had a son and a daughter. William enlisted at the age of 34 as a Sapper, and in May 1918 was attached to 9th North Staffordshires, a pioneer battalion. On the 11th May they were in Fonquevillers between Arras and Amiens when 2,000 gas shells were lobbed into the town. 59 men died immediately, and 140 were taken to a Field Hospital, many, like William, destined to suffer a lingering death a few days later. His father Robert died at his Wigtownshire farm less than two months later. Elizabeth never remarried. Read more about Ernest, Edward and William’s lives and untimely deaths at http://www. and in the book “Supreme Sacrifice: A Small Village and the Great War available from www.birlinn. or Abbey Books, 2 Well Street, Paisley, and other major bookshops or online. Gordon Masterton deadline date for our june issue - Friday 18th May - You don’t want to miss it!!

may 2018 t: 01505 613340 e: Interested in Photography? Our local camera clubs continually supply us with stunning shots which we use throughout the magazine, sometimes as banners or even front pages. If you’ve been inspired, why not join them and maybe see some of your photographs in print! Paisley Colour Photographic Club: Thursday evenings at the McMaster Centre, Renfrew. Langbank Camera Club: Second and fourth Mondays of the month. For more information please contact Derrick McPherson at Gryffe Camera Club: Wednesday night at The Carrick Centre, Houston between 7.30pm and 10pm. Kilmacolm Camera Club: Tuesday evening, 7.30pm (October to March) at the Kilmacolm New Community Centre, Room 1.01. For more information contact: Billy Blair, Tel: 873383; Janice Stevenson, Tel 873595. Website: Diaporama: Second monday of each month @ 7.30pm in the Carrick Centre Houston. Taken by Kate Cummings (Diaporama) on the island of Harris Taken by Mike Cruise (PCPC) - “Black Grouse at Leck” Hedgehog Awareness Week 25 This runs from 6th-12th May 2018. Can you pledge to do even just one thing to raise awareness of the hedgehogs’ plight during Hedgehog Awareness Week? You might contact your local council or Tool Hire Company and ask them to use our free Strimmer stickers on their machines (see http://www. hedgehog-heroes-roll-honour/) You might organise an event such as a coffee morning, cake sale, jumble sale, sponsored event or fun day. You could text HHOG18 £5 to 70070 to donate £5 to BHPS. (You can change amount to £1, £2, £3, £4, or £10 donate those amounts). You can also find our JustGiving Appeal page at campaigns/charity/bhps/haw18 and if you are holding and event or doing a sponsored something you can link in with us there. You could display information in your local library, school or garden centre, etc. You could contact your local newspaper or radio station asking them to help hedgehogs by printing a letter from BHPS (we can provide a letter to the editor on request) or organising an interview with us during this week. Taken by Ross Samson (PCPC) - “That Pool in Glen Rosa” Enjoy your walk Taken by Frank Donnelly (PCPC) - “Over It” Scotland’s outdoors is a great place for dogs and their owners. But please remember you and your dog share the outdoors with others. You have the right to be on most land for recreation providing you act responsibly (as set out in the Scottish Outdoor Access Code). Dogs that aren’t kept under proper control are a real concern for land managers and visitors to the countryside. Dogs can worry and injure farm animals, disturb wildlife and can scare other people. Dog waste also spreads diseases, especially if the dogs haven’t been regularly wormed. Find out more about the Scottish Outdoor Access Code at You could post leafl ets in your area letting people know how to help hedgehogs in their gardens. We can provide leafl ets and posters, just email us - info@ or download from our website If you are organising an event or display, please let us know so that we can keep a list of events all across the country. Please do at least one thing during this week to help hedgehogs @GryffeAds

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