Rutherglen (/ˌrʌðərˈɡlɛn/, Scots: Ruglen) is a town in South Lanarkshire, Scotland. Having existed as a Lanarkshire burgh in its own right for more than 800 years, in 1975 it lost its own local council and administratively became a component of the City of Glasgow District Council within the Strathclyde region (along with neighbouring Cambuslang). In 1996 Rutherglen was reallocated to the South Lanarkshire council area.[2][3][4]


Main Street, the main shopping area of Rutherglen
Location within Scotland
Rutherglen (Scotland)
OS grid referenceNS614616
Lieutenancy area
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townGLASGOW[1]
Postcode districtG73
Dialling code0141
EU ParliamentScotland
UK Parliament
Scottish Parliament


Rutherglen received the status of Royal Burgh in 1126 by Royal Charter from King David I of Scotland[5] who ruled from 1124 to 1153. In the 14th century Walter Stewart, father of King Robert II, was granted Farme Castle. This was located close to Farme Cross in the east of Rutherglen, and stood until the 1960s.

Rutherglen was a centre of heavy industry,[6][5] having a long coal mining tradition which died out by 1950. J&J White's Chemical Works (later ACC Chrome & Chemicals) in Shawfield, which was in existence from 1820 to 1967, produced more than 70 per cent of the UK's chromate products including chromic acid, chromic oxide pigment, sodium and potassium chromate and dichromate. Today there is a significant legacy of soluble chromium (VI) waste in the area. Rutherglen, and most of the other towns encircling the city, are dormitory suburbs of Glasgow.[7]


The name of Rutherglen, as well as its Scots name Ruglen,[8] is perhaps from Scottish Gaelic An Ruadh-Ghleann, meaning 'the red valley'. The derivation may also however be Welsh, or Cumbric and mean "the valley of Rydderch". Rydderch - pronounced 'rutherch' - 'ruther' as in 'brother' and 'ch' as in 'loch' - was one of the most famous kings associated with the Welsh-speaking kingdom which centred on Dumbarton.[9][5]



Rutherglen was a parliamentary burgh represented in the UK Parliament as a component of Glasgow Burghs constituency from 1708 to 1832, and as a component of Kilmarnock Burghs from 1832 to 1918. In 1918, the Rutherglen constituency was created, which became Glasgow Rutherglen in 1983. In 2005, Scottish constituencies for the UK parliament were mostly replaced with new constituencies, and Rutherglen is now within the Rutherglen and Hamilton West constituency.

Following the 2017 election, Gerard Killen is the local MP,[10][11] replacing Margaret Ferrier of the Scottish National Party who had won in 2015.[12][13]


In 1999, the Scottish Parliamentary constituency of Glasgow Rutherglen was created, with the same boundaries as the then UK parliamentary constituency. In 2011 The constituency was redrawn and renamed simply Rutherglen (although it also encompasses Cambuslang). Following the 2016 elections, Clare Haughey (SNP) is the MSP for Rutherglen. The defeated incumbent James Kelly (Labour) was elected as a list MSP for the Glasgow region which includes Rutherglen.[14] All local representatives have strong personal ties to the area.

South Lanarkshire Council

Administratively, the town centre is within the Rutherglen Central and North ward of South Lanarkshire Council,[15][16] which has a population of around 15,000.[17] Including another ward of similar size encompassing the southern parts of the town, its overall population was approximately 30,000 in 2016. With neighbouring Cambuslang's figures being very similar, the many services and amenities shared between the towns must provide for 60,000 residents.

2007 elections

The councillors elected for Rutherglen Wards in the 2007 local elections were:

2012 elections

In the 2012 local elections, the following councillors were elected:

2017 elections

In the 2017 local elections, the following councillors were elected:[19]


Rutherglen Main Street is served by Rutherglen railway station and there are also numerous bus links into Glasgow City Centre. Completion of the M74 Extension means that there is a motorway going through the town, that will allow easier access to places such as Glasgow Airport and the English Border.


The local newspaper is the Rutherglen Reformer.

The local community radio station is CamGlen Radio.

Areas in the Royal Burgh of Rutherglen

The Royal Burgh of Rutherglen has expanded over the years and now contains many other areas.

Since being granted Royal Burgh status by King David I, the town has grown from strength to strength and increased in size. It now covers a much larger region than the initial Burgh boundary. The nearby village of Burnside and High Burnside fall under the Rutherglen boundary but have their own Community Council. Historic areas such as the Burgh, Farme Cross, Quigleys and Burnside have changed greatly over the years too and more recent estates like Westhouse and the post-war developments of Newfield and Burnhill have given the Burgh an ever-changing character.

The current area of Rutherglen can be divided into 22 areas (seven of which fall into the Burnside and High Burnside area of the Burgh which was once, and is often still considered to be, self-contained).


The Burgh area of Rutherglen includes the old heart of the Royal Burgh of Rutherglen and the area directly around it. It features a war memorial, several religious establishments, old school house, new restaurants, a statue of Dr. Gorman, old county buildings, old tenements.

The Mitchell Arcade was given a makeover and renamed the Rutherglen Shopping Centre and used to feature a Daily Market. The Town Hall was recently refurbished as well.

Farme Cross

Farme Cross is one of the Boundary Areas of the Royal Burgh and is surrounded by the River Clyde and the City of Glasgow (Dalmarnock). There are a great many monuments and attractions here including a series of Standing Stones to commemorate the boundary stones of the old Royal Burgh and another monument near the bridge to Dalmarnock in Glasgow.

There is a lot of development work proposed for this region following the completion of the M74 Extension to the Glasgow Region Motorway network and the Clyde Gateway developments.[21][22][23] A new retail park around the supermarket features two fast-food restaurants, KFC and McDonald's.

Cuningar Loop

The Cuningar Loop is an area on the south of the River Clyde near the Farme Cross district of Rutherglen. It has now been transformed into a woodland park[24] connecting across the River Clyde to the City of Glasgow (Dalmarnock) and the Commonwealth Games village.


The Shawfield region of the Royal Burgh of Rutherglen is mostly abandoned business districts. The Clyde Gateway projects aims to reinvest in this region and create new business parks and make the River Clyde accessible in Rutherglen once again. The old port of Rutherglen is accessible where the railway line passes over the riverside path. This area is however overgrown. You can access Farme Cross from under the railway bridge via the undergrowth.

Currently Shawfield Stadium (the former home of Clyde FC) is home to dog racing. Although not immediately noticeable, the building has Art Deco features.


Burnhill in the West of the Royal Burgh of Rutherglen borders the City of Glasgow (Toryglen and Hangingshaw). The region is home to the Rutherglen Branch of the South Lanarkshire Council youth club, Universal Connections and also The Celsius Stadium for Rutherglen football club, Glencairn. The area heavily features grassland, especially around the grass mound of Burnhill itself where the Jenny Burn from Cathkin Braes and Castlemilk (Glasgow) passes underneath.


Lying adjacent to Burnhill, Newfield is a small estate bordering Bankhead (Rutherglen) and Croftfoot (Glasgow). There are limited amenities on the border with the Glasgow region including a pub and small grassed areas are dotted around between the housing.


Falling almost entirely within the Newfield and Bankhead areas is a new estate of Newhouse. This area features modern, attractive housing developments and keeps the green theme from Glasgow and Rutherglen with gardens throughout.


Lying immediately behind the Burgh area, Clincarthill rises high over Rutherglen offering views across the Royal Burgh. There is a church and a school in this area and plenty of remaining old sandstone tenements from the past. The area has a distinctive character of its own.


Lying across Stonelaw Road from Clincarthill, the Wardlawhill area includes some older, large housing, tenement buildings as well as a church, also featuring the old Rutherglen Academy which later became Stonelaw High School. A BBC Scotland found that Wardlaw Drive in the neighbourhood ranked seventh among the steepest streets in Scotland.[25]


The area including and surrounding Overtoun Park features a number of old buildings, including a nearby set of old red sandstone tenement buildings. The fountain in the park was once in Rutherglen Main Street. It had been erected in 1897 to mark Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee but was moved to the park in 1911 as it had become an obstacle to the increasingly popular motor car. The park was briefly one of the City of Glasgow District Parks when Rutherglen was under Glasgow Rule from 1975 to 1996.


The area known locally as East Main Street featuring some old tenement buildings. There is also an ancient burial mound which had been used at one time as an icehouse in the grounds of the now demolished Gallowflat house.


South of Gallowflat you reach Stonelaw, an area including Stonelaw High School and Rutherglen bowling club. This region has many features of the Garden Suburb including Woodburn Park a valley-like park on the East of Stonelaw Road which takes its name from the now-demolished Woodburn House. The most up-market place in Rutherglen, it is home to many expensive properties. The house system of Stonelaw High School names used to be based from avenues in the Stonelaw Area Jedburgh, Dryburgh, Melrose and Kelso. However, this was changed to the Scottish Islands: Arran, Bute and Skye at the start of the 2018 school year.


With a burn flowing through it and some old tenement buildings. There is a small row of shops here also.

Quigleys Estate

Once a private estate, the land of Quigleys is now a housing scheme - albeit a small one. The burn that flows through most of this side of Rutherglen is visible here for some distance ending in a small pond near the Bankhead estate. The grassland and pathway here are popular with local residents.

Burnside and High Burnside

A small village within the Rutherglen boundary. Centred mostly around the Stonelaw Road and Burnside Road areas. It is a pleasant leafy suburb approximately six miles from the heart of Glasgow with its own set of shops and a small parkland, namely, Stonelaw Woods and Woodburn Park. It is also home to a supermarket (off Stonelaw Road) and hotel (off East Kilbride Road). There are a number of churches and a bowling green, and several tennis courts. Much of the traditional residential property was built in the early 1900s from blond and red sandstone providing a pleasant, traditional environment for families.


Burnside itself contains the main shopping area and some older housing. Stonelaw Woods lies at the northern boundary of the village and takes its name from the old Stonelaw Tower (a form of castle) that once stood nearby Burnside and the Stonelaw area of Rutherglen. The nearby Woodburn Park offer local residents many green spaces to visit.

High Burnside

High Burnside is a region to the south of Burnside which includes nearly all of the more modern estates mentioned below. As such the elements of High Burnside that remain are mostly the streets of older houses off of Burnside Road north of Blairbeth Road (including several with great views over the Burgh of Rutherglen and the City of Glasgow) and those off the Cathkin Bypass and at the far side of the Cathkin Estate. A small park sits at the heart of High Burnside with amenities for children.

High Crosshill

A small region featuring some old houses and bordering the Burnside area of the Royal Burgh. It gives access to Overtoun Park, has some views on Broomieknowe Road and includes Rutherglen Cemetery.


A self-contained estate featuring a few local landmarks such as a sports court and the Cathkin Library. There are two local schools (Loch Primary and St AnthonysRC ) and small parts of the estate are built on the land of a former loch (Boultrie Loch) which was a hot-spot for curling and skating in winter. A new stone sign welcomes you into the estate from the East Kilbride Road entrance. There is a small collection of local shops near the library and a sports pitch in a pen at the heart of the estate. A large housing tower block looms over the centre of the estate also.


A modern estate, currently undergoing a great deal of regeneration. The estate borders the City of Glasgow (Carmunnock and Cathkin Braes Country Park) and offers views over the City of Glasgow valley. A small wooded area (Cathkin Woods) near the boundary region with Cambuslang (Whitlawburn) and East Kilbride District. Cathkin Shops off Cathkin Bypass and Cullins Road feature a supermarket, local newsagent, betting shop and more. The old Cathkin House at the top of the estate offers a great view over Rutherglen and Glasgow beyond. Like many parts of the town, a new stone and metal entrance sign welcomes you as you enter Cathkin from Cathkin Bypass.


A modern housing estate undergoing a great deal of regeneration. It is home to an all girl High School and has its own Community Centre. A park was regenerated in the 1990s, Fernhill Park and offers a home to many animals. The area is bordered by the City of Glasgow (Castlemilk). Fernhill Road divides the estate. The Cathkin Relief Road was built in 2016/17 at a cost of £21 million and takes Mill Street from Rutherglen and extended it through the parkland between Fernhill and High Burnside to connect with the Cathkin Bypass. This Resulted in the loss of much parkland and habitat. It split Fernhill from the other areas of Rutherglen. The estate has two churches at either end and an entrance sign off Burnside Road.


Blairbeth housing estate with some small local amenities and little parks. The area borders Burnside proper and includes several hillside streets with views over the Burgh of Rutherglen and Glasgow. New facilities for local residents have been added to the estate. A large grass field bordering Fernhill Road and Mill Street is popular in the summer months for football. This park land is being reduced in size by the Cathkin Relief Road project which is currently under construction.


A small community with a little burn flowing through it (originating somewhere in Cathkin Braes Country Park or Castlemilk Park in the City of Glasgow). A new Community Centre was built some years back. There are also local amenities. The estate borders Croftfoot and Castlemilk in the City of Glasgow. A small grassed area borders the local centre and the burn (popularly known as the Jenny Burn in Castlemilk, Glasgow).


Loch Primary and Cathkin Primary are feeder schools for Cathkin High School, which is located at Whitlawburn just outside the Rutherglen boundaries and is primarily the secondary school for Cambuslang. Conversely, two schools located in Cambuslang (James Aiton and Park View) are feeders for Stonelaw High, as is Toryglen Primary in Glasgow. Trinity High is the only Catholic secondary school for both towns, as is the case for Rutherglen High School, the local Additional Support Needs facility which shares a campus with Cathkin High.[26][27]

All council-run schools in the South Lanarkshire area were rebuilt between the 1990 and 2010s.

Non-denominational schools

  • Bankhead Primary School, Bankhead Road, Rutherglen, G73 2BQ
  • Burgh Primary School, 41 King Street, Rutherglen, G73 1JY
  • Burnside Primary School, Glenlui Avenue, Burnside, Rutherglen, G73 4JE
  • Calderwood Primary School, Buchanan Drive, Rutherglen G73 3PQ
  • Cathkin Primary School, Burnside Road, Rutherglen, G73 4AA
  • Loch Primary School, Lochaber Drive, Springhall, Rutherglen, G73 5HX
  • Spittal Primary School, Lochlea Road, Spittal, Rutherglen G73 4QJ
  • Stonelaw High School, 140 Calderwood Road, Rutherglen, G73 3BP

Roman Catholic schools

  • St Anthony's Primary School, Lochaber Drive, Springhall, Rutherglen, G73 5HX
  • St Columbkille's Primary School, Clincarthill Road, Rutherglen, G73 2LG
  • St Mark's Primary School, Kirkriggs Avenue, Blairbeth, Rutherglen, G73 4LY
  • Trinity High School, Glenside Drive, Eastfield, Rutherglen, G73 3LW

Private schools


Rutherglen Glencairn F.C. play in the West Region of the Scottish Junior Football Association. The club was formed in 1896 and has won the famous Scottish Junior Cup on 4 occasions (1901–02, 1918–19, 1926–27, 1938–39).[28] Glencairn recently moved into a brand new stadium (New Southcroft Park, currently sponsored by Celsius Cooling and renamed as The Celsius Stadium) situated in the Burnhill area of Rutherglen following the demolition of the old ground (Southcroft Park), where they had played for over 100 years. The Glencairn Venue building on Glasgow Road, which is on part of the old site - the rest now being under the M74 motorway, is owned by the football club, although the company operating in the building is a separate entity from the club. In 2008, Rutherglen Glencairn won the Central District League First Division Championship with a record points total. The 2009/2010 season saw Glencairn record back to back Championships when they won the West Region Super League Division One Championship at the first attempt.

Clyde Football Club used to play in the area before moving to the former new town of Cumbernauld. The immediate area could be considered the cradle of Scottish football, with Hampden Park, the national stadium and home to Scotland's oldest football club Queen's Park F.C. being close by as well as Cathkin Park, the home of the defunct Third Lanark F.C. and not far to the north, Celtic Park, the home of Celtic F.C. - all of which (apart from Clyde's former ground) are located in the City of Glasgow.

In addition to men's amateur teams (such as Rutherglen AFC of the Scottish Amateur Football League), the town also has a women's football club: Rutherglen Girls FC was founded in 2012 and currently features three age group teams plus a senior Ladies team competing in the SWFL Division 2 - West/South West league.

Notable people

Several notable persons born between 1973 and 1996 are also 'from' Rutherglen, although in many cases their link is only tenuous due to the town being the location of a large regional maternity hospital (now closed) operating between these years; many children born here would have grown up in Glasgow, East Kilbride or elsewhere. This list includes international football players Craig Bryson, Steven Hammell and Aiden McGeady, as well as footballers Chris Erskine, Fraser Kerr, Willie Howie, Dave Mackay, international rugby players Richie Gray and Jonny Gray, and golfer Marc Warren. Others with clear ties to Rutherglen are listed below.


Politicians and media personalities

Scientists and physicians




The local war memorial is by Scots sculptor George Henry Paulin.[37]

See also


  1. "List of UK post towns". Evox Facilities. Archived from the original on 19 February 2012. Retrieved 22 February 2012.
  2. "New Local Government areas". Hansard. 22 October 1973. Retrieved 4 November 2018.
  3. Irene Maver. "Modern Times: 1950s to The Present Day > Neighbourhoods". The Glasgow Story. Retrieved 4 November 2018.
  4. "Scotland's Landscape: City of Glasgow". BBC. Retrieved 4 November 2018.
  5. Local and family history: Rutherglen - history in the making, South Lanarkshire Council
  6. "Rutherglen Lanarkshire". A Vision of Britain through Time. Retrieved 15 August 2018 via University of Portsmouth.
  7. "Mid-2016 Population Estimates for Settlements and Localities in Scotland". National Records of Scotland. Retrieved 27 June 2019.
  8. "List of railway station names". 18 August 2011. Retrieved 16 November 2012.
  9. "Ainmean-Àite na h-Alba - Gaelic Place-Names of Scotland - Database". Retrieved 16 November 2012.
  10. Kerr, Aiden (9 June 2017). "Labour gain first Scottish seat from SNP in election". STV Group. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
  11. Spooner, Murray (9 June 2017). "Labour takes Rutherglen and Hamilton West". Daily Record / Rutherglen Reformer. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
  12. "Election 2015: Rutherglen & Hamilton West". BBC News. 8 May 2015. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
  13. Dickie, Douglas (8 May 2015). "Rutherglen and Hamilton West election results: SNP's Margaret Ferrier takes Labour hotspot with 52 per cent of the vote". Daily Record / Rutherglen Reformer. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
  14. "Scottish Parliament election 2016 constituency result: Rutherglen". The Scotsman. 6 May 2016. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
  15. "Map ward 12 - Rutherglen Central and North" (PDF). South Lanarkshire Council. 4 May 2017. Retrieved 23 July 2018.
  16. "Rutherglen Central and North". Police Scotland. Retrieved 23 July 2018.
  17. "South Lanarkshire". City Population. 30 June 2016. Retrieved 23 July 2018.
  18. Dickie, Douglas (20 February 2013). "Killen wins Rutherglen South for Labour". Daily Record / Rutherglen Reformer. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
  19. "Council elections: SNP biggest party in Rutherglen and Cambuslang but Tory success is big talking point". Daily Record / Rutherglen Reformer. 5 May 2017. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
  20. "Labour hold Rutherglen Central and North". Daily Record / Rutherglen Reformer. 24 November 2017. Retrieved 18 March 2018.
  21. "Two 74". Ashfield Land. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
  22. "Green light for £15m mixed use development in South Lanarkshire". Scottish Construction Now. 17 February 2016. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
  23. "Rutherglen's Two74 project faces delay". Daily Record / Rutherglen Reformer. 15 September 2016. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
  24. "Cuningar Loop - Forestry and Land Scotland".
  25. Is this Scotland's steepest street?, BBC News, 28 August 2019
  26. Our primary schools, South Lanarkshire Council
  27. Our secondary schools, South Lanarkshire Council
  28. "Team Photograph". Retrieved 16 November 2012.
  29. "Linlithgow's Hayley acts up a storm in Hollywood".
  30. "Plaque on King Street (actually Queen Street)". Geograph. 12 April 2013. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
  31. "Family of eminent doctor appeal for information (Daily Record, 2016)".
  32. "James B Russell". Retrieved 29 May 2016.
  33. Spooner, Murray (18 February 2016). "Two Fernhill sisters have been selected for the Scotland Women's training camps". The Daily Record. Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  34. "Collette McCallum plays final game as Australia draw with Scotland". Daily Record. 16 April 2015. Retrieved 19 October 2016.
  35. "Scotland call-up for Amy McDonald". Daily Record / Rutherglen Reformer. 4 March 2009. Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  36. "Celtic legend Bobby Murdoch honoured at Rutherglen Town Hall". Daily Record. 17 October 2016. Retrieved 16 December 2016.
  37. A Brief Biography of George Henry Paulin, Air Comm. Marcus Wetherspoon


  • Rutherglen Lore by W. Ross Shearer, printed in 1922
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