Find your way around Strathaven and Stonehouse
FIRST THINGS FIRST! The best way of finding your way around the Lanarkshire communities of Strathaven and Stonehouse is to purchase a copy of Ronald P A Smith's Strathaven/Stonehouse Street Plan, available from the publisher. This map was published for the first time at the end of 2001. At the large scale of 8 inches to 1 mile (1:7500), it is the most detailed map of its kind available; the only one with comprehensive indexes and locations of antiquities and places of interest; leisure facilities; schools; places of worship; health and welfare facilities; and other information including the local footpath network and locations of industrial estates, emergency services, etc. When you have the opportunity, please take a moment to directly compare our maps with those of our competitors!
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THE TOWN OF STRATHAVEN
Strathaven is a pleasant market and residential town in Avondale, Lanarkshire, some 15 miles south-east of Glasgow and 7 miles south of Hamilton. It has a long history, having become a Burgh of Barony in 1450 and even a Royal Burgh for a time. The town lies on the banks of the Powmillon Burn which is crossed by the picturesque Boo-Backit Brig (photograph on left) and which flows into the Avon Water about a mile downstream. Handloom weaving was Strathaven's main industry in the 18th and 19th centuries and, in 1820, a local weaver called James 'Purlie' Wilson was hanged for his part in the 'Radical Revolt'.
In the late 19th century, Strathaven was described in the following terms. "The old parts of the town have an ancient appearance, their houses much huddled together, and their streets narrow and irregular; but the modern parts contain some excellent houses, and comprise fine wide streets." More than most Lanarkshire towns, this early character has been retained, perhaps because it remained outwith the county's main focus of late 19th century industrial development. Today, the town is a prosperous, expanding commuter town for Glasgow, East Kilbride and Hamilton (2001 population - 7,700), and its picturesque character and excellent public parks make it a popular destination for day-trippers.
Antiquities and Places of Interest
Strathaven Castle - Strathaven's main building of historical interest is the castle, situated on its prominent mound close by the main A71 through road (see photograph on right). Now a ruin, it was originally a seat of the Hamilton family and dates back to the early 15th century. Around the back, there is an interesting walk beside, and over, the Powmillon Burn, while, to the east is the Town Mill Arts Centre.
John Hastie Museum - In a parkland setting, close by the centre of the town, is the John Hastie Museum, an exceptionally interesting local museum covering topics such as weaving, covenanting, local business and general local history.
Strathaven Park - Strathaven's main 'draw' for visitors is the town's extensive public park, made up of the adjacent George Allan and John Hastie Parks. It contains attractive gardens, a boating pond, children's play areas, a miniature railway, a putting green, tennis courts, a bowling green, an ornate bandstand and a cafe.
The park, the museum and the other attractions of the town make Strathaven the perfect place for a family day out - if the information provided here has whetted your appetite for a visit to the town, don't forget to purchase a copy of R P A Smith's Strathaven/Stonehouse Street Plan to find your way around!
The large village of Stonehouse (2001 population - 5,056) lies about three miles eastwards down the valley of the Avon Water from Strathaven. Recently by-passed, the old village centre is characterised by its rows of late 18th century and early 19th century weavers' cottages, many of which have double windows originally intended to increase the amount of light reaching the looms. The village's oldest structure is the remaining fragment of the old St Ninian's Church, dating from the 17th century and standing in its ancient graveyard. Close by is the Alexander Hamilton Memorial Park which contains footpaths down to the Avon Water, a bandstand and other recreational facilities.
The village narrowly escaped becoming the nucleus of Scotland's sixth New Town after this status was designated in 1973. However, only the groups of new housing at Murray Drive were built before the project was cancelled four years later as Government policy began to favour urban regeneration in Glasgow and Central Lanarkshire.
R P A Smith's range of Street Plans covers the following towns and villages in Lanarkshire:
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