Second in a series about Strathbungo’s motor garages.

This is the story of the buildings at 39, 43 and 47 Nithsdale Street, of which the former survive, though not in their original form. No 47 was demolished in 2017.

Regent Park Dairy

Sepia photo of Nithsdale Street with a very old-fashioned fire engine driving up the road.

Regent Park Dairy, Nithsdale Street, with passing fire appliance. Date and origin unknown

David Imrie ran a dairy and stables from the buildings, using 47 as his house. He was the fourth son, and fifth child, of Alexander Imrie and Janet Millar of Norriestown Farm, Thornhill, but grew up on Birkenshaw Farm (now buried beneath Eastwood Health Centre, near Williamwood Station). He married Barbara Mackie in Crossmyloof in 1865, and then lived in Strathbungo, at Lorne Cottage. However his dairy was in the Gorbals at that time, so we don’t know if that was a name for the house and dairy. The date and architect of the buildings are unknown, but they appear on Bartholomew’s map of 1876, and he was advertising for a dairymaid there in 1883.

Dairymaid wanted. One who can make up butter preferred. Apply to David Imrie, Regent Park Dairy, Strathbungo

Any dairymaids available? First reference to Regent Park Dairy, Glasgow Herald November 1883. Source: British Newspaper Archive

In the 1891 census he is listed at 47 Nithsdale Street with his wife, eight children, and five staff members (a dairymaid, servant, shop keeper and two van drivers). That’s a lot of people for a small house.

David died in 1909. His son Alexander became a dairyman in the Gorbals, but not at Strathbungo, and a David remains listed in the valuation roll until at least 1915, so it isn’t clear who ran the dairy after his death. It might be his second son David, who was a veterinary surgeon and hose shoer in Dennistoun in 1901.

Nithsdale Motor Company

In 1920 Nithsdale Motors Ltd was founded by John Osborne of 2 Moray Place, and his son Herbert, and they took over the premises at 37 and 43 .

John Blair

Meanwhile just up the street John Blair was working as a funeral director and cab and carriage (& later motor car) hirer at 69 Nithsdale Street, from around 1895 to 1923. He also had premises at 111 Eglinton Street, 20 Albert Road, Crosshill, and Pollokshaws East Railway Station, and a garage and stables in Nursery Street, Strathbungo. He lived at 92 Albert Drive, Crosshill.

Headed bill for John Blair

John Blair bill, for £2 17s 6d, about £300 now – was he selling a cab? Source: eBay

Miller and Morrison

Around 1923 Miller & Morrison took over the business of John Blair at 69 Nithsdale Street and 20 Albert Road, and two years later that of Nithsdale Motors. They also acquired garage storage space at 41 Nursery Lane by 1930 – probably the livery stables that originally belonged to John Blair. They gave up No 69 in 1931, when they redeveloped the site at 37 & 43. Plans with Glasgow City Archives from October 1930 show the original layout of the old dairy prior to alteration.

Plans in blue

Plan of the former Regent Park Dairy & stables, prior to alterations. Note the extensive basement, not seen from the road but accessible from the rear lane and below the courtyard. The basement on the left extended under the street. The right-hand pavilion was used as a house. Source: Glasgow City Archives 1930/170

Front and rear elevations

Front and rear elevations of the original building. Source: GCA 930/170

47 Nithsdale St

47 Nithsdale St, Feb 1931, before work commenced. Source: GCA

Miller & Morrison demolished the left-hand pavilion, and extended the central workspace to replace it, and to fully cover the rear courtyard.

Front and rear elevations

The central portion was possibly demolished and rebuilt to extend over the left-hand pavilion and the rear courtyard. The basement was retained. Architect James Reid. Source: GCA 1930/170

47 Nithsdale St after conversion

47 Nithsdale St, Jan 1932, after conversion. Source: GCA

In 1936 a further application was made to to raise the roof of the right-hand pavilion and provide a proper upper storey with bedrooms, and to include a large oriel window looking out onto the street, but this was never executed. There were up to three residents in the house at this time, including William McFadyen, a motor driver, and Thomas Hunter, an engineer, possibly staff of the business.

Front and side elevations, and plans for the planned alterations to the house. J Cameron, architect. Source: GCA 1936/115

The director of the firm was Thomas Miller of 40 Nithsdale Drive, and from 1948 his sons T & G G Miller of 1036 Pollokshaws Road and 47 Nithsdale Street respectively . The business was still operating in 1950, and G G Miller was living in the house, but I don’t know for how long after.

Subsequent fate

The garage building was used in the late 20th century by Ride On Motorcycles, run by Carole and Alastair Hutchison. When the Hutchisons retired the business closed and World Foods took over part of the building. The central section is now being redeveloped as a Roma Cultural Centre. The right hand pavilion was allowed to fall into disrepair and was demolished in 2017. There’s more on the building in an older post from the time of demolition.

Additions and corrections are welcome.


Financial News | Aberdeen Press and Journal | Saturday 22 May 1920 | British Newspaper Archive [Internet]. [cited 2023 Nov 3]. Available from:
New Scottish Companies | The Scotsman | Saturday 27 November 1948 | British Newspaper Archive [Internet]. [cited 2023 Oct 4]. Available from: