Doors Open Glasgow, 17 September 2011

Doors Open Days have been taking place in Glasgow since 1990. They are a fabulous way to see buildings, or parts of buildings, you might not normally get into and we’ve taken part most years. Occasionally we’ve booked tours (Scottish Ballet last year was particularly good) but usually we just wander round and see what takes our fancy. This year, I had been invited to a party on the Saturday afternoon so we needed some local visits to do in the morning, i.e. In the West End. We found two good ones.

St John’s-Renfield Church is just up the hill from our house and I’ve walked or driven past it many, many times but have never been in. It dominates the skyline in Kelvindale:

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The church was built between 1929 and 1931 and is light and spacious inside. It is not terribly ornate apart form its beautiful stained glass windows. I particularly liked the series of small side windows by Gordon Webster, an elder of the church, which date from the late 60s and early 70s. My favourite is this one dedicated to the church’s women:

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Next port of call: Anniesland College. Every day on my way to work I stop at a certain set of traffic lights and stare straight up the hill at it. I watched as it was rebuilt a couple of years ago and have been dying to see inside ever since.

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We had tours from two different guides. Nicola took us round some of the more unusual classrooms, such as this one for practising the skills of an air steward (no drinks were served unfortunately.)

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We also saw the library, which was of particular interest to me, and I discovered that as a local resident I can join it for free.

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Finally, Paul took us round the different workshops – joinery, painting and decorating, engineering etc. Here, my favourites were the musical instrument and car workshops.

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We spent so long there that I had to rush home to change to go to my friend’s and didn’t have time for lunch. But hey, there was cake at the party, so who’s worrying?

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