Nostalgists aside, a new-look Argyle Street will bring a ray of sunshine to Glasgow
It perhaps says something about the Glaswegian psyche that the Hielanman’s Umbrella is spoken of by locals with such affection.
The bridge, over which trains travel into the city’s Central Station, has provided shelter to travellers for more than a century but beyond its practical use, it has little to recommend it to any visitor.
If one’s idea of a good time is to inhale the stench of old cooking oil while trying to avoid the attentions of lubricated daytime drinkers, then the Hielanman’s Umbrella is bridge at Central Station is for you.
Otherwise, it really is best avoided. So we’re right behind plans to transform Glasgow’s Argyle Street which include a proposal to install huge LED displays on the Umbrella’s roof. Glasgow is a beautiful, vibrant city, but too many parts of the city centre – especially around the River Clyde – can feel bleak and unwelcoming. That’s why such a facelift is long overdue.
The district surrounding Central Station is one of those areas that has, over, time been allowed to become rather run down.
In recent years, Glasgow has seen countless - often deeply unattractive - apartment blocks pop up. At the same time, much of the city’s spectacular Victorian architecture has been allowed to fall into disrepair.
Plans to revamp parts of Glasgow really are long overdue.