Glasgow Herald (Glasgow, Scotland), Saturday, February 23, 1895;
Location – Maryhill
“Yesterday 121 soup supplies were given at the kitchen in Maryhill, a trifle less than on the previous day. There was also a fairly large number of orders for provisions and coal granted. Although not as keen as in other districts of the city, there is obviously at Maryhill a considerable amount of genuine distress. Five men who were lodges in the muster room were supplied with bread and hot tea before being sent out in the morning.
Superintendent Beddie acknowledges the receipt of the following donations:-
- A cheque for £5 5s and 100 loves from Mr John Watson, wine merchant, 130 Main Street;
- A quarter of a sheep and 200 loaves from the trustees of the late Alex Mackenzie spirit merchant, Gairbraid Street;
- 12 dozen loaves from Mr Charles Stewart, wine merchant, Bridge Street;
- 40lb sugar and 40 2oz. Packets of tea from Mr Robert T MacIntosh, grocer, 208 Main Street;
- 10s from Mr Andrew Leckie, wine merchant, Main Street;
- 12 dozen loaves and a large package of tea and sugar from Mr Andrew Munro, grocer Main Street;
- A large package of tea and sugar Councillor JW Dick;
- 12 tons of coal from the Maryhill Co-Operatve Society per Mr Alex Butchart, Wyndford House;
- Ox heads, Beef and mutton from Mr Campbell butcher, Great Western Raod, Hillhead;
- A cheque for £2 2s from Mr Matthew Hardie spirit merchant Bridge Street;
- …and 200 loaves from Mr Robert Burns JP Rosemount Villa
In addition to Maryhill, there were also updates from the work of the Soup Kitchens in Northern, St Rollox, Central District, Eastern and Southern. Also Hillhead, Govanhill and Polmadie, Kinning Park, Govan, Partick, Paisley, Airdie, Coatbridge, Greenock and Renfrew.
It further noted that an increase in temperatures had temporarily relieved the suffering caused by fuel poverty another cause of real hardship over a century later.
“one congregation alone in the centre of the city has taken charge of between 80 and 100 poor families and their work of rescue has assisted materially in lessening the call made on the public fund.”
118 years later
October 16th 2013 – A day designated as World Food Day.
And once again the people of Maryhill are in need,
On Westendreport.com an article on the newly established Greater Maryhill Food Bank quotes one of it’s volunteers, Sheila Ramsay.
“It’s not just people who don’t have jobs who use the food bank, it’s also people with jobs on low incomes. We’re seeing 20 different families each week. It’s a growing need and we’re responding to that. If this service wasn’t needed then that would be lovely. But that’s not the case.”
On October 8 2013 whilst browsing social media site Twitter I noted the following appearing
“trying to raise awareness for a new food bank service, helping those living in greater Maryhill area! Wee RT x x”
What we collect
118 years on and the people of Maryhill are once again helping those in their community in greatest need. On a small scale, locally and largely unreported.
They are there in spite of the sneering of government ministers that food bank users just need to “budget properly”
Perhaps some of the items donated have changed over 118 years. For “Ox heads” and a Quarter of a Sheep” read “Dry pasta and “Dry rice”. Sadly whatever the item, it would seem the need is very much there again for a growing section of our communities.
That it should have come to this again is something for debate elsewhere however the outrage felt at the need for Food Banks in 21st Century Britain is very real. Many of us grew up in challenging social and economic times in a Scotland scarred by unemployment. We had needs and we went without so-called luxuries more times than we’d admit but how often were we actually hungry?
That there are people in our society today in need of food donations is truly depressing. However as in Victorian Britain there are those whose priorities are first and foremost to attempt feed their fellow citizens. Such as Greater Maryhill Food Bank.
This is where we come in. We know our history. We know that 125 years ago Celtic Football Club was founded with these words,
“The main objective of the club is to supply the East End conferences of the St. Vincent De Paul Society with funds for the maintenance of the “Dinner Tables” of our needy children..”
We are still in our 125th year. On October 27th 2013 at 12.45 pm Celtic will play Partick Thistle. Our last away game in our 125th year.
As we approach the conclusion of our 125th anniversary we have one simple request.
Help to feed your fellow citizens as the founders of the club did 125 years ago.
From 10.00 am on Firhill road at both sides of Firhill Stadium volunteers will be taking your donations. They will have the usual buckets for cash donations but they will also have vans parked ready and very willing to take your food donations.
We would appeal to Celtic supporters to support the work of Maryhill Food Bank by bringing donations of any of the items listed above.
Bringing a few cans to the game will take on a whole new meaning when the cans are full of beans, fish and rice pudding!
This year has seen spectacular levels of support for the charitable aims of Celtic. Huge sums of money have been raised to the credit of the club and the support.
This appeal won’t change the world. Louis Tomlinson won’t be on Maryhill Road and we may have no press coverage.
You can guarantee one thing though.
Just as it did 125 years ago, it will make a difference.
The work of Greater Maryhill Food Bank can be viewed in more detail here
or on Facebook
or on Twitter