Timeline - Eaglesham History Society
The official page of the Eaglesham History Society
Eaglesham, history, society, vintage, Renfrewshire, village, planned village, polnoon, montgomery, eglinton arms, EHS, past, Orry, cotton mill
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A group of small children stand at the top of Montgomery Street in the early 1900s


400AD-500AD: It’s probable that there’s been a place of worship in Eaglesham from the earliest Christian times, perhaps as early as the 5th or 6th centuries.

1160s: Walter Fitz-Alan the first Seneschal (High Steward) of Scotland distributes his lands amongst his Anglo-Saxon supporters. The lands of Egglisham are granted to Robert de Montgomerie, a knight descended from Arnulph de Montgomerie and fifth son of Roger de Montgomerie.

1388: Sir John de Montgomerie captures Henry, Lord Percy — also known as Hotspur — at the Battle of Otterburn. It is believed that Sir John later built Polnoon Castle with the ransom for his prisoner.

1506: Hugh de Montgomerie, second Lord Montgomerie, acquires the title of Earl of Eglinton for his services to King James IV.

1685: Covenanters Robert Lockhart and Gabriel Thomson are shot by Highlandmen and Dragoons under the command of Archibald MacAulay for their adherence to the Solemn League and Covenant as they return from a conventicle.

1672: Alexander, 8th Earl of Eglinton, obtains an Act of Parliament for “ane yeirlie fair and weiklie mercat at the Kirktoun of Eagleshame”.

1769: Alexander, 10th Earl of Eglinton, begins the work of developing the old kirktoun of Eaglesham into a planned village.

1774: The Feuars’ Association is founded.

1790: The present Eaglesham Parish Church is built.

1798: Robert Pollok, a poet best known for The Course of Time, is born.

Little has changed in Polnoon Street down the decades

1831: The Eaglesham Farmers’ Society is formed.

1844: Allan and James Gilmour purchase the Eaglesham Estates from the Earls of Eglinton and Winton after seven centuries of ownership.

1857: St Bridget’s Church is established.

1859: Allan Gilmour commissions architect David Bryce to design Eaglesham House, a Scots Baronial-style country house as a residence. Built at a cost of £70,000, the house has its own garden and gas house.

1876: The Orry Cotton Spinning Mill is destroyed by fire. Many of the mill workers move away and their houses lie empty.

1893: A telegraph office is inaugurated, enabling telegraphs to be received for transmission at Eaglesham Post Office.

1901: Allan Gilmour officially opens the new school building.

1905: The horse-drawn bus service is replaced by a motor bus.

1928: Electricity is introduced to Eaglesham for the first time.

1930s: With many houses lying empty, damp and in a poor state of repair, a local councillor suggests that the village be entirely demolished and replaced with council housing.

1941: Rudolf Hess crashes his plane at nearby Bonnyton Farm.

1954: Eaglesham House is destroyed by fire.

1960: Eaglesham is designated Scotland’s first outstanding Conservation Area.

2005: The Glasgow Southern Orbital road opens, finally relieving Eaglesham of heavy traffic.

2006: Whitelee, the largest onshore windfarm in Europe opens on the outskirts of the village.

2019: Eaglesham celebrates the 250th anniversary of the planned village.

The distinctive turbines of Whitelee Windfarm started to appear on the moors outside Eaglesham in 2006