Streets of Glasgow: Hutcheson Street

Hutcheson Street: a golden building on the corner of a street with Hutcheson Street on a sign. Trades sculpture: a sculpture of a bucket with tools sticking out of it. It is between two tall city buildings.

This post could be subtitled ‘Everything Else Has Gone Wrong’, the title of the recent album by Bombay Bicycle Club. A poster peeled off a hoarding on Hutcheson Street and it just seemed apposite for the times, prescient maybe. Posters advertised events whose dates had passed but nothing would have transpired due to the pandemic. I’ve noticed that in recent weeks. Advertising won’t have been changed on buses, bus stops or city streets so everything has stood still, films advertised as coming out at the cinema in March. The world had changed. There was hand sanitiser outside Brewdog to prove it, a graffiti argument on a wall, other words against the police. A development towards the Trongate looked like it had resumed after a long pause, diggers silent since it was Sunday rather than for any other reason. A plane flew overhead, shimmering in the bright August sunshine. A man and boy sat on a bench, others parked their car prepared for an afternoon in the big city. A sculpture, a circular blob with two holes, sat in a window near Ingram Street; a bigger piece, a pot of craft tools, promoted the history of tradespeople in the city. The old blended with the modern, the buttresses jutting above the modern glass roof leading to the Scottish Youth Theatre and a bar with its red T lit.

I couldn’t remember who the street had been named after. I sensed there might be a slavery link, like much of the Merchant City, and wondered if one day soon it might have a new name. I had been wandering looking in a different way, not just through the prism of the pandemic. As far as I can make out, Hutcheson Street is named after the founders of the hospital, who don’t seem to have been involved in the slave trade. I did wonder if it had been named after Francis Hutcheson, philosopher during the Scottish Enlightenment, who argued against slavery, but the hospital founders would be more likely. Their old hospital, now a restaurant, stands at the top of a very varied city street.

Thanks for reading. This is the seventy second Streets of Glasgow post here on Walking Talking. Nearby streets that have featured here previously include Ingram Street, Trongate, Argyle Street, Wilson Street, Virginia Street and Glassford Street. Other posts in the series can be found on the Streets of Glasgow page.

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