MacMillan, Andy (1 of 10). National Life Story Collection: Architects' Lives
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2013-11-29, 2013-11-30, 2013-12-01
Interviewee's home, Glasgow
MacMillan, Andy (1928-2014) (speaker, male)
Franklin, Geraint (speaker, male)
Part 1: Introduction to recording location. Andrew McMillan [AM], born 11 December 1928 in Glasgow. Father had an inherited name Andrew [Harkness] MacMillan of Murlaggan. Ancestral home a highland cottage on Cameron of Lochiel’s estate. Paternal grandfather first to come to Glasgow. Came via Edinburgh, was green keeper or club master of Hilton Park golf course in Bearsden, an outer suburb of Glasgow. Origin of paternal family on Kintyre peninsular on west coast of Scotland. Family’s move to village on Loch Arkaig and later placed themselves under Lochiel branch of the Cameron clan. [00:04:07] Recollection of paternal grandmother. Brother produced family tree: one of AM’s ancestors shot for treason after Battle of Culloden. Description of paternal grandmother’s house and family. Maternal grandmother had two daughters. AM mentions maternal cousins. Father’s interest in family ancestry, AM’s lack of interest. [00:09:31] Description of mother [Mary Jane McKelvie, MM], a nanny in Bearsden. AM refers to Glaswegian vernacular and the use of different registers. Refers to Glaswegian education system. Maternal grandmother lived in a miners’ row [terrace] in Ayrshire. Recollection of grandmother’s funeral. [00:14:50] Comparison of houses of father’s and mother’s families. After the war, AM’s family moved into a prefabricated, steel ‘Weir house’ in Maryhill, a Glasgow suburb. [00:17:33] Description of grandmother’s miners’ cottage and standard layouts of Glasgow tenements. [00:19:50] Discussion of Glasgow; remarks on possible origins of Glasgow grid iron plan in colonial towns in Virginia, known to Glaswegian tobacco merchants. Role of Provost and Dean of Guild in planning the city. Remarks on trade routes of Glaswegian merchants. Influence of living in Glasgow on AM’s formation as architect. Further remarks on tenements, their density, layout, and hierarchy of relationships. Trips into countryside by tramcar. Anonymity of city life. Influences on planning of Glasgow. Remarks on the river Clyde and its shipyards. Comments on Scottish education system. [00:34:50] Role as leader in cubs, scouts, platoon sergeant in school army cadets. In 1945 started work as apprentice in Glasgow City Corporation, attending night classes at Glasgow School of Art [GSA]. Mentions leadership of childhood gang. Gained understanding of bricklaying from uncle. Early experience of building sites, behaviour of builders.