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March 7, 2018

History of our streets

Wondering round my community’s recent participatory budgeting event - Leith Chooses – one project that caught my attention was from a small group of residents from an area of new build housing who were keen to create some community spirit. With no local history to build on, they really felt they were starting from scratch. Their strength of feeling about this made me wonder how significant having a shared sense of local history can be. A fascinating series on BBC looking at the Secret History of Our Streets reveals much. Glasgow’s Duke Street goes under the microscope tonight.



The Secret History of Our Streets, Series 2 Episode 2 of 3  at 20.00 . Watch short clip about Duke Street, Glasgow here

BBC Two’s multi-award-winning Secret History of Our Streets told the story of six London streets, from Victorian times to the present day.

Now, as its people stand at a crossroads in their history, the series travels to Scotland to tell the stories of three archetypal streets in Scotland’s three great cities: Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen.

Endlessly surprising and not at all what you would expect, the stories of these streets are the story of a nation.

Duke Street is Britain’s longest street, running from Glasgow city centre through the heart of Glasgow’s East End. Elegant Victorian tenement blocks line the road to the south of Duke Street. Yet just 40 years ago, those tenements were under threat. This is the story of how a group of pioneering residents took on the Glasgow Corporation in a battle to save their homes.