Glasgow (Scottish: Glaschu) is the largest city in Scotland, but it is not Scotland's capital. That is
Glasgow is in the west of Scotland on the River Clyde and is the capital of the Strathclyde region.
Glasgow used to be famous for its ship building, but over the last 30 years this industry has decreased and
few ships are built here now. Glasgow is now often visited by tourists. Many new buildings have been
built in the city in the last 20 years.
There are a number of theatres and concert halls in the city. The biggest in the SECC, The Scottish
Exibition & Conference Centre. Over the years almost every famous popular singer and group have
performed in Glasgow, including The Beatles, Bob Dylan, The Moody Blues, Diana Ross and many
In summer it is popular as a base for tourists. They can stay in Glasgow and then travel to see Loch
Lomond and the Western Isles. One of the oldest paddle-steamer boats is in Glasgow, and in the summer
one can travel down the Clyde to visit other towns and islands. The city of Edinburgh is one hour's
journey to the east and there are two airports in or near the city, Glasgow Airport and Prestwick Airport.
The main railway stations, Glasgow Central and Queen Street stations, provide rail links to the rest of
Scotland, and to England.
Glasgow has several football teams - the best-known are Rangers and Celtic. Partick Thistle, Clydebank,
and Queens Park Rangers also play in the city.
Glasgow is located on the banks of the River Clyde, in
West Central Scotland.
Glasgow weather is typical of Scottish weather and
The summer months (May to September) are often
mild but unpredictable. The winds are generally
westerly, due to the warm Gulf Stream. The warmest
month is usually July, averaging 19°C (66.2°F).
However, temperature can change suddenly, and is
normally a few degrees colder than southern England.
Mornings may be damp and misty, or dreich (a
Scottish term for damp and drizzly), but become sunny
and warm by afternoon.
Though there are some rainy and windy days, spring
(March to May) is fairly mild. Many of Glasgow's
trees begin to flower at this time of the year and the
parks and gardens are filled with spring colour.
Winters can be damp with few sunny days; however
the Gulf Stream ensures that Glasgow stays warmer
than other cities at the same latitude, e.g. Moscow.
Winds can be chilling and cold, though severe
snowfalls are infrequent and do not last. December,
January and February are the wettest months of the
year, but can occasionally be sunny and clear.
The actual city council area of Glasgow peaked in population the 1930s with a population of 1,088,000
people and for over 50 years was over 1.3 million people. However, after the peak of the 1930s the
population declined, due to relocation to the 'new towns' in clearings of the poverty-stricken inner city areas
like the Gorbals. Glasgow was during this period of its history one of the most densely populated cities in the
world. In addition, successive boundary changes reduced the official city boundaries (and hence official
population) making direct comparisons difficult as the city continues to expand beyond the official city
council boundaries into surrounding suburban areas, emcompassing nearly 400 square miles if all adjoining
suburbs, commuter towns and villages are included.
There are two distinct definitions for the population of Glasgow; the Glasgow City Council Area (which
lost the district of Rutherglen to South Lanarkshire and the Greater Glasgow Urban Area which includes
the urban cornubation around the city. Since the 2001 census the population decline has stabilised and the
population of both the City of Glasgow council area and Greater Glasgow are forecast to grow in the near
future (the 2004 population of the City of Glasgow council area was 585,090). However when all suburbs
and other towns forming the conurbation in the Glasgow area are included the population almost doubles in
Compared to Inner London (22,438 people per sq mile), Scotland's major city has less than half the current
population density of the English capital (8,528). However, in 1931 the population density was 16,011,
highlighting the 'clearances' of the inner city to the suburbs and new towns that were built to empty one of
Europe's most densely populated cities
Here is the Bird that never flew
Here is the Tree that never grew
Here is the Bell that never rang
Here is the Fish that never swam
Glasgow's Coat of Arms dates back to 1866 when the Lord
Lyon first granted the city its patent. The emblems depicted
within the armorial bearings go back much further in history,
representing legendary incidents in the life of the city's founder
and patron saint, St Kentigern, or as he was more affectionately
known, St Mungo, meaning "the dear one".
The Bell is believed to represent the one given to St Mungo by
the Pope. Until the 16th century St Mungo's Bell played an
important role in the life of the city, tolled regularly as a
reminder to the inhabitants to pray for his soul. A replacement
was purchased in 1641 and now lies in the People's Palace.
Inscribed on it is the city's motto: "Lord let Glasgow flourish
through the preaching of thy word and praising thy name." -
often shortened to: "Let Glasgow Flourish". The fate of the
original bell is unknown.
The Tree - although depicted as an oak - represents the hazel
branch which the young St Mungo miraculously set alight
when the holy fire of the monastery at Culross was
mischievously extinguished by the other boys.
The Bird represents a robin brought back to life by the young
saint after St Serf's disciples had accidentally killed it and
The area of Glasgow has long been used for
settlement due to the River Clyde providing a
natural area for fishing. Glasgow became important
in the 12th century as the site of a bishopric,
reorganized by King David I of Scotland and John,
Bishop of Glasgow. There had been an earlier
religious site the exact age of which is unknown.
According to doubtful hagiographical tradition, this
ecclesiatical site had been established by Saint
Kentigern. The bishopric became one of the largest
and wealthiest in the Kingdom of Scotland, bringing
wealth and status to the town. Somewhere between
1175 and 1178 this position was strengthened even
further when Bishop Jocelin obtained for the
episcopal settlement the status of burgh from King
William the Lion, allowing the settlement to expand
with the benefits of trading monopolies and other
legal guarantees. Sometime between 1189 and 1195
this status was supplemented by an annual fair,
which survives to this day as the Glasgow Fair.
Glasgow grew over the following centuries, and the founding of the University of Glasgow in
1451 and elevation of the bishopric to an archbishopric in 1492 increasing the town's religious
and educational status. In the 16th century Glasgow became prominent in international trading as
a hub of trade to the Americas, especially in the movement of tobacco, cotton and sugar. The
industries of Scotland produced textiles, coal and steel, which were exported. Shipbuilding
became a major industry on the Clyde, building many famous ships. By the end of the 19th
century the city was known as the "Second City of the Empire" and was producing most of the
ships and locomotives in the world. During this period, the construction of many of the city's
greatest architectural masterpieces and most ambitious civic projects were being funded by its
The 20th century showed a great decline in the city's fortunes, especially with the effects of two
World Wars and the Great Depression. The city's industries became uncompetitive, leading to
high unemployment, urban decay and poor health for the city's inhabitants. At the end of the
Second World War there were active attempts at regeneration of the city, when the Glasgow
Corporation published its Bruce Report which set out a comprehensive series of initiatives aimed
at turning round the decline of the city.
By the end of the century there had been a significant resurgence in Glasgow's economic fortunes,
finding a new role as a European centre for business and finance, as well an increase in tourism.
The latter due to the legacy of the city's status as European City of Culture in 1990, and the
product of its thriving artistic community. The ongoing regeneration of inner-city areas has led to
people moving back to live in the centre of Glasgow, although some areas of the city remain
amongst the most deprived in the UK.
Glasgow was historically
based around Glasgow
Cathedral, the old High
Street and down to the
River Clyde via Glasgow
Cross: City centre,
Merchant City, Financial
district, The West End,
The East End, The South
Side, North Glasgow,
Very little of medieval Glasgow remains, the two main
landmarks from this period being the 14th century Provand's
Lordship and Glasgow Cathedral. The vast majority of the city
as seen today dates from the 19th century. As a result, Glasgow
has an impressive heritage of Victorian architecture - the
Glasgow City Chambers, the main building of the University of
Glasgow, designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott, and the
Glasgow School of Art, designed by Charles Rennie
Mackintosh, being outstanding examples. Another architect who
had a great and enduring impact on the city's appearance was
Alexander Thomson, who produced a distinctive architecture
based on fundamentalist classicism that gave him the nickname
"Greek". He was described as a "quiet, stay-at-home Victorian
behind whose buttoned-up facade there seethed a kind of
stylistic corsair who plundered the past for the greater glory of
The buildings reflect the wealth and self confidence of the
residents of the "Second City of the Empire". Glasgow generated
immense wealth from trade and the industries that developed
from the Industrial Revolution. The shipyards, marine
engineering, steel making, and heavy industry all contributed to
the growth of the city. At one time the expression "Clydebuilt"
was synonymous with quality and engineering excellence. The
Templeton's Carpet Factory on Glasgow Green was designed to
resemble the Doge's Palace in Venice. The allusions to another
great trading city, seem appropriate.
The city has many amenities for a
wide range of cultural activities,
from curling to opera and from
football to art appreciation; it also
has a large selection of museums
that include those devoted to
transport, religion, and modern art.
The city's principal library, the
Mitchell Library, is the largest
public reference library in Europe,
currently housing some 1,213,000
Glasgow is home to a variety of
theatres including The Kings
Theatre, Theatre Royal and the
Citizens Theatre and is home to
many municipal museums and
art galleries, the most famous
being the Kelvingrove Art
Gallery and Museum, the
Gallery of Modern Art (GoMA)
and the Burrell Collection. Most
of the museums in Glasgow
operate a free entry system.
The city has hosted many exhibitions over
the years, including being the UK City of
Achitecture 1999, European Capital of
Culture 1990, National City of Sport 1995-
1999 and European Capital of Sport 2003.
In addition, unlike the Edinburgh Festival
(where all Edinburgh's main festivals occur
in the last three weeks of August),
Glasgow's festivals virtually fill the entire
calendar, from January through to
December. Major festivals include the
Glasgow Comedy Festival, Glasgow Jazz
Festival, Celtic Connections, Glasgow Film
Festival, West End Festival, Merchant City
Festival, Glasgay, and the World Pipe Band
Some of the city's main venues include the Glasgow
Royal Concert Hall, the SECC and King Tut's Wah Wah
Hut (where Oasis were spotted and signed by Glaswegian
record mogul Alan McGee) and The Barrowlands, a
historic ballroom, converted into a mecca of live music.
More recent mid-sized venues include ABC and the
Carling Academy, which play host to a similar range of
acts, and numerous smaller venues play host to the city's
countless local bands and smaller touring performers. For
the more alternative crowd, the Cathouse often hosts gigs
from a variety of Punk, Metal and Industrial bands.
Glasgow is also home to a thriving electronic music
scene, with a particularly strong reputation for techno
and house music. Clubs like The Arches, The Sub Club
and record labels such as Soma and Glasgow
Underground have supported this strong underground
movement for the past two decades in the city.
In recent years, the success of bands such as Franz
Ferdinand, Belle & Sebastian, The Fratellis and Sons &
Daughters has significantly boosted the profile of the
Glasgow music scene, prompting Time Magazine to
liken Glasgow to Detroit during its 1960's Motown
Glasgow has a long sporting
history, with the world's first
international football match held in
1872 at the West of Scotland
Cricket Club's Hamilton Crescent
ground in the Partick area of
Glasgow. The match was between
Scotland and England and resulted
in a 0–0 draw. It is the only city to
have had two football teams
competing in European finals in the
same season: in 1967 Celtic were
in the 1967 European Cup final
while at the same time Rangers
were in the Cup Winners Cup final.
• The city is home to Scotland's largest football stadia: Celtic Park (60,832 seats), Ibrox Stadium
(51,082 seats) and Hampden Park (52,670 seats), which is Scotland's national football stadium.
Hampden Park holds the European record for attendance at a football match: 149,547 saw
Scotland beat England 3-1 in 1937, in the days before British stadiums became all-seated.
• Glasgow has three professional football clubs: Celtic and Rangers, which together make the
Old Firm, and Partick Thistle. A fourth club, Queen's Park, is an amateur club that plays in the
Scottish professional league system. It had two other professional clubs in the late 20th
century: Clyde, which moved to Cumbernauld, and Third Lanark, which went bankrupt. There
are a number of Scottish Junior Football Association clubs within the city as well, such as
Pollok, Maryhill and Petershill, as well as countless numbers of amateur teams.
• The history of football in the city, as well as the status of the Old Firm, attracts many visitors
to football matches in the city throughout the season. It is the only city in Europe with three
stadia each with a capacity of at least 50,000 seats. Hampden Park and Ibrox have also been
awarded UEFA 5 star status, meaning that they are capable of hosting the final of the
Champions League. Celtic Park however does not, owing to the changing rooms in the listed
South Stand being too small. Hampden has hosted the final on three occasions, most recently
in 2002. Hampden will also host the UEFA Cup final in 2007. The Scottish Football
Association, the national governing body, and the Scottish Football Museum are based in
Glasgow, as are the Scottish Football League, Scottish Premier League, Scottish Junior
Football Association and Scottish Amateur Football Association.
The city is home to the Scottish national media. It is home to the headquarters of BBC
Scotland as well as stv (formerly Scottish Television). The Scottish press publishes
various newspapers in the city such as the Evening Times, The Herald and The Sunday
Herald. Scottish editions of Trinity Mirror and News International titles are also printed
in the city. SMG plc is a Glasgow-based media conglomerate with interests in
Television, Radio and Publishing. ITV plc is believed to own a significant stake in
SMG. Amongst others, SMG owns and operates both Scottish ITV franchises (Central
Scotland and Grampian), both now branded stv, Virgin Radio, Pearl & Dean, and
Primesight - who sell outdoor advertising sites such as billboards.
Various radio stations are also located in Glasgow. Scottish Radio Holdings dominates
commercial radio in Glasgow with 2 analogue radio stations : Clyde 1 and Clyde 2
(which can reach over 2.3 million listeners). In 2004, SMG plc sold its 27.8% stake in
Scottish Radio Holdings to the broadcasting group EMAP for £90.5m.
Club Sport League Venue Capacity Logo
Celtic Associatio Scottish Logo 60,832
Footbal Premier League
Partick Associatio Scottish Capacity 10,887
Thistle n Footbal Football League
Queen's Associatio Scottish Celtic Park 52,500
Park Footbal Football League
Rangers Associatio Scottish 60,832 51,082
n Footbal Premier League
Glasgow also boasts a professional rugby team, the
Glasgow Warriors, which plays in the Celtic
League alongside teams from Scotland, Ireland and
In the Scottish Club leagues, Glasgow Hawks was
formed in 1997 by the merger of two of Glasgow's
oldest clubs: Glasgow Accademicals and Glasgow
High Kelvinside (GHK). Despite the merger, the
second division teams of Glasgow Accademicals
and Glasgow High Kelvinside re-entered the
Scottish Rugby League in 1998.
Club Sport League Venue
Glasgow Warriors Glasgow Warriors Glasgow Warriors Glasgow Warriors
Glasgow Hawks Glasgow Hawks Glasgow Hawks Glasgow Hawks
GHA GHA GHA GHA
Glasgow Academicals Glasgow Academicals Glasgow Academicals Glasgow Academicals
Glasgow High Glasgow High Glasgow High Glasgow High
Kelvinside (GHK) Kelvinside (GHK) Kelvinside (GHK) Kelvinside (GHK)
The city is a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic community
with diverse religions.
The Church of Scotland and the Catholic Church are
the two largest Christian denominations in the city (in
terms of membership). There are 150 congregations
in the Church of Scotland's Presbytery of Glasgow
(of which 106 are within the City of Glasgow
boundaries, the other 44 being in adjacent areas such
The Central Mosque in the Gorbals district is the
largest mosque in Scotland and, along with 12 other
mosques in the city, caters for the city's estimated
50,000 Muslim population. Glasgow also has seven
synagogues. It has the fourth-largest Jewish
population in the UK but once had a large Jewish
population second only to London. Glasgow also has
a Hindu Mandir and a new Sikh Temple is due to
open in 2007.
Glasgow opened the St Mungo Museum of Religious
Life and Art in 1993, which is the only religious
multi-faith museum in the world.
Glasgow has a long history of supporting socialist ideas
and politics. The city council has been controlled by the
Labour Party for 30 years. Its socialist roots emanate
from the city's days as an industrial powerhouse, and
endure through the previously mentioned levels of
relative poverty amongst many Glaswegians. In the
aftermath of the Russian Revolution and the Easter
Rising, the city's frequent strikes and revolutionary
fervour caused serious alarm at Westminster, with one
uprising in January 1919 prompting the Prime Minister,
David Lloyd George to deploy 10,000 troops and tanks
onto the city's streets. A huge demonstration in the city's
George Square on January 31 ended in violence after the
Riot Act was read.
Later, industrial action at the shipyards gave rise to the
"Red Clydeside" tag. During the 1930s, Glasgow was
the main base of the Independent Labour Party. Towards
the end of the 20th century it became a centre of the
struggle against the poll tax, and then the main base of
the Scottish Socialist Party, a left wing party in Scotland.
The British Communist Party also have a notable
following in the city of Glasgow in particular.
Glaswegian, otherwise known as The Glasgow Patter is a local, anglicised variety of
Glaswegian is a dialect, more than an alternative pronunciation; words also change their
meaning, e.g. "away" can mean "leaving" as in A'm awa, an instruction to stop being a
nuisance as in awa wi ye, or "drunk" or "demented" as in he's awa wi it. Pieces refers to
"sandwiches". Ginger is a generic term for carbonated soft drink, generally in a glass
bottle (A boatal a' ginger). Then there are words whose meaning has no obvious
relationship to that in standard English: coupon means "face", via "to punch a ticket
coupon". A headbutt has come to be known in many parts of Britain as a "Glasgow kiss".
A speaker of Glaswegian might refer to those originating from the Scottish Highlands
and the Western Isles as teuchters, while they would reciprocate by referring to
Glaswegians as keelies. A (rather old-fashioned) Glaswegian insult is hieland, which
means "awkward" and is Scots for "Highland". Example: that wean's got an awfu hieland
wey o haudin that spuin meaning "that child has a very awkward way of holding that
The TV series Chewin' the Fat, Rab C. Nesbitt and Still Game capture the humour of the
Glaswegian patois, while Billy Connolly has made Glaswegian humour known to the rest
of the world.
Glasgow is also a major education centre with four
universities within 10 miles (16 km) of the city centre:
the 15th century University of Glasgow (which has one
of the highest ratios of students who continue living at
home in Scotland), the University of Strathclyde, the
Glasgow Caledonian University, and the University of
Paisley; as well as teacher training colleges, teaching
hospitals such as the Glasgow Royal Infirmary, the
Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, Glasgow
School of Art, and ten other further education colleges.
The University of Glasgow is a member of the Russell
Group of elite British Universities and is a founding
member of the organisation Universitas 21, an
international grouping of universities dedicated to
setting world-wide standards for higher education.
Glasgow is home to a student population in excess of
168,000, the largest in Scotland and second largest in
the United Kingdom, the majority of them living in the
West End of the city.
Glasgow is the largest and most dynamic economy in
Scotland and is at the hub of the metropolitan area of West
Central Scotland which has a total population of around
2.3 million, nearly half of Scotland's total population. The
city itself sustains more than 410,000 jobs in over 12,000
companies. The wider area of Glasgow Greater Glasgow
sustains over 900,000 in 40,000 companies. Over 153,000
jobs have been created in the city since 2000 - a growth
rate of 32% The city now outstrips most of its European
counterparts and rivals most North American cities in
terms of growth. 55% of the residents in the Greater
Glasgow area commute to the city every day.
Manufacturing industries such as shipbuilding and heavy
engineering have been gradually replaced in importance
by a modern mixed economy, supported by public and
private investment and a skilled workforce.
Glasgow's economy is now dominated by key tertiary
sector industries such as financial and business services,
communications, biosciences, creative industries,
healthcare, retail and tourism. Between 1998 and 2001, the
city's burgeoning financial services sector grew at a rate of
• Glasgow has a large urban transportation system, mostly
managed by the Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT),
part of Transport Scotland. Until 2006 it was known as
Strathclyde Passenger Transport and was the only Passenger
Transport Executive in Scotland. SPT is formed and financed
out of the twelve unitary authorities in the Greater Glasgow
area including Glasgow City Council It has responsibility for
local train services, the Subway, certain ferries and buses.
• The city has many bus services, almost all provided by
private operators since bus deregulation in 1986, however
SPT fund services where there is public need but no service.
SPT also own and run the principal bus station in Glasgow,
Buchanan Bus Station, which is a terminus point for many
long distance intercity coach services as well as local
journeys. A number of controversial 'bus corridors' have been
invested in by Glasgow City Council focusing on main bus
routes with real time information, and bus priority measures
at a significant cost. The Greater Glasgow Passenger
Transport Executive (GGPTE), formerly the municipal
transport operator, is as a result of bus deregulation now
privately owned by First Group, who operate a vast bus
network in the city. Other large operators in Glasgow are
Arriva and Stagecoach with a number of smaller operators
catering to individual districts including First Stop Travel and
• Glasgow has the most extensive urban rail network in the UK
outside of London, with rail services travelling to a large part of the
West of Scotland. All trains running within Scotland are operated by
First ScotRail, who own the franchise as determined by the Scottish
Executive. This company is part of the First Group that runs the
majority of bus services in the country. There are two main railway
terminals which provide train services throughout the United
Kingdom: Central Station and Queen Street Station. Local trains
within Glasgow are however run by First Scotrail to the
specification and requirements of SPT, who provide rolling stock in
the distinctive SPT livery of Carmine and Cream. The city's
suburban network is currently divided on both sides of the River
Clyde. Many have long pressed for a link which will join the two
halves of the urban railway network together, making possible
through journeys via the central area without having to disembark at
either Central or Queen Street and traverse the city centre by foot or
road. The Glasgow Crossrail initiative has been proposed as a
solution and is currently awaiting funding from the Scottish
• As well as the suburban rail network, SPT also run UK's only
completely underground metro system, the Glasgow Subway
(nicknamed by journalists the 'Clockwork Orange' after its 1970s
renovation due to the new orange livery of the trains and its single,
circular line, but not called this by locals, who actually simply refer
to it as the "the underground", "the subway" or "the tube"). The
Subway avoids traffic between the city centre, the Southside and the
West End A single ticket is £1, and a return £2, however after 0930
a "discovery" day ticket can be purchased for £1.90.
• A number of ferries used to link opposite sides of the
Clyde in Glasgow. However, these have steadily
disappeared, mainly due to the construction of new
bridges and tunnels including the Erskine Bridge,
Kingston Bridge, and the Clyde Tunnel, which
rendered them obsolete. The only remaining crossings
are the Renfrew Ferry between Renfrew and Yoker,
and the Kilcreggan Ferry in Inverclyde, both run by
SPT but outwith the city boundary. The paddle-
steamer PS Waverley, the last operational sea going
paddle-steamer in the world, still provides services
from Glasgow City Centre, mainly catering to the
pleasure cruise market. A regular service by Pride of
the Clyde waterbuses link the City Centre with
Braehead in Renfrewshire, some 30 minutes
A BROWN bear rescued by Brigitte Bardot and brought to Scotland
has become the latest symbol of conflict between animal-rights
campaigners and the debt-ridden Glasgow Zoopark.
Bongo the Bear was to be put down tomorrow, but the plans have
been shelved after Advocates for Animals claimed it would be the
first in a mass cull of animals unable to be rehoused when the zoo
closes in September.
Management at the zoo last night dismissed as "disgracefully
sensationalist" the claims by the animal-rights campaigners. They
claim Bongo’s death will be a mercy killing, as the beast is suffering
from old age and disease.
The war of words came as it emerged that other Scottish zoos have
no space to commit to the Glasgow animals.
The 100-acre site at Calderpark in the east end of the city has run up
debts approaching £3.65 million and saw a rescue plan involving the
sale of land to housebuilders hit by planning delays.
The Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
(SSPCA) has been brought in to assist the zoo in finding new homes
for the 68 species.
However, yesterday, management at Edinburgh Zoo and Blair
Drummond Safari Park, in Stirlingshire, admitted they cannot offer
accommodation for the beasts.
• Glasgow has over 70 parks within the City boundaries and such
is the diversity of these parks you will always be able to find
somewhere to suit your taste.
If you are looking for peace and quiet to enjoy a good book
during your lunch break why not try Kelvingrove Park at one
of the many picnic benches located throughout the park and
beside the River Kelvin? A great day out for the whole family
can be found at Glasgow’s parks, for example Queens Park,
with its outstanding Rose Gardens and Play Areas, or why not
attempt the Healthy Walk Course at your own pace then visit
the café at the Display Houses for a snack?
• For the active in the community there are a range of outdoor
pursuits in the parks to suit all: Orienteering Trails, Bowling
Greens, Putting and Pitch and Putt courses, Croquet Lawns
and even Skateboard Parks.
• There is fantastic range of events throughout the year at the
parks including model boats at Queens Park, concerts at
Glasgow Green, poetry recitals at the Botanic Gardens and
woodland walks at Pollok Park.
• So whether you want some peace and quiet away from the
crowds or want an inexpensive family day out, one of
Glasgow’s parks will fit the bill.
Texas is a pop music band from
Glasgow, Scotland. It was founded by
Johnny McElhone (formerly of the
bands Altered Images and Hipsway) in
1986 and had their performing debut in
March 1988 at Scotland's University of
Dundee. They took their name from the
1984 Wim Wenders movie Paris,
Texas. Their musical sound went from
blues rock on their debut album
Southside via the blue-eyed soul of
White on Blonde to the disco pop of
• Billy Boyd (born 28 August 1968 in Glasgow) is a Scottish actor
and musician most widely known for playing Peregrin Took
(Pippin), in the film adaptations of The Lord of the Rings (2001-
2003) and Barrett Bonden in Peter Weir's film Master and
Commander: The Far Side of the World (2003).
• He and his sister Margaret were raised by their grandmother after
their parents died when he was 13. In 1984, aged 16, he appeared
in local musical company Theatre Guild, Glasgow's production of
• As well as being an actor, he can sing, and play the guitar, bass,
and drums. He wrote and sang a song in Peter Jackson's The Lord
of the Rings: The Return of the King called Edge of Night.
• He is a graduate of the Royal Scottish Academy of Music
and Drama, where he earned a diploma in Dramatic Arts. He is a
stage actor as well as a screen actor. He has been in several plays;
recent ones include "San Diego" and "The Ballad Of Crazy
• He currently owns a house in Lesmahagow with his girlfriend,
Alison McKinnon. On 26 April 2006, he and McKinnon
welcomed their first child, son Jack William Boyd.
• In 2007, Boyd will star in the movie adaptation of Irvine Welsh's
best-selling novel Ecstasy: Three Tales of Chemical Romance.
Glasgow's wonderful, Italian-style
City Hall hosts many Glasgow
events throughout the year and has
become an important entertainment
venue in the Merchant City area of
Glasgow. Other attractions at
Glasgow City Hall include the Old
Fruitmarket, musical events,
concerts, exhibitions and stylish
meeting rooms. Glasgow City Hall
is close to the St. Enoch train
Glasgow landmark open: Monday
to Saturday 09:00 to 18:00
• The Cunard Shipping Line was founded in Glasgow and that the liners Queen Mary, Queen Elizabeth, QE2 and the Royal
Yacht Britannia were all built on the River Clyde at Clydebank.
• Greenock-born James Watt invented the separate condenser after a walk on Glasgow Green in 1765, an invention which
made the steam engine economically viable.
• Paisley Museum houses the world's largest collection of Paisley Pattern shawls.
• Craignethan Castle, by Crossford, is where Mary Queen of Scots is reputed to have spent her last night of freedom.
• Charles Macintosh, inventor of the waterproof coat, lived and worked in Glasgow where, in 1824, he was responsible for
the first commercial manufacture of the waterproof material.
• Granville Sharp Pattison, a Glasgow Surgeon, emigrated to the United States in 1816 and founded the Baltimore Infirmary,
the country's first teaching hospital.
• Hamilton Mausoleum, which dates from the 1850s, has the longest echo of any building in Europe - 15 seconds!
• The Waverley, the world's last ocean going paddle steamer was built in 1947 by A & J Inglis on the River Clyde.
• Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the world-famous architect and designer, was born in Glasgow in 1868. His work can be seen
in many locations in and around the city.
• Sir William Burrell was estimated to have spent around £20,000 a year on works of art for more than 45 years of his life.
• In 1939, Glasgow had 114 picture houses, seating in excess of 175,000; more cinema seats per head than any other city in
the world. The average Glaswegian would go an incredible 51 times per year!
• Billy Connolly, the comedian and actor, was born in Partick in Glasgow in 1942.
• Robert Carlyle was originally a Glasgow house painter prior to becoming a major television and cinema actor.
• Roy Rogers and Trigger are reputed to have descended the staircase of Glasgow's Central Hotel. .
• 'Braveheart' William Wallace is reputed to have been born in the Renfrewshire village of Elderslie. He also lived in Lanark
for a few years around 1297 and is commemorated by a statue on the town's St Nicholas Church.