The Village of Chryston - North Lanarkshire - Scotland
Chryston
What's in a Name - History Revealed The   presence   of   stone   age   man   in   the   locality   is   attested   by   the   discovery   of   implements   of   the   mesolithic   period   (i.e. upwards   of   6,000   years   old)   on   the   north   shore   of   Woodend   Loch,   less   than   three   miles   from   Chryston.   About   800   fragments, including   blades,   scrapers,   picks,   flakes,   microliths   and   cores   of   flint,   chert   (black   and   green)   and   mudstone,   were   identified   by Mr   J.   M.   Davidson   during   the   1930s   and   1940s.   Evidence   of   settlement   at   a   later   period   was   provided   by   the   discovery   of   a crannog   at   nearby   Bishop   Loch   (in   1898)   and   another   at   Drumpellier   or   Lochend   Loch   (in   1931).   The   Lochend   crannog   was excavated   under   the   supervision   of   Mr   Ludovic   Mann   during   February   1932.   Apart   from   beams   and   other   elements   of   the timber   construction,   finds   included   pottery   sherds,   animal   bones,   three   perforated   lignite   discs,   part   of   a   jet   bracelet   and   two quern-stones. To   1535   the   name   of   the   village   is   entered   as   Chrystinsone,    Christinston ,   Crysterstown ,   Criston    and   Crystown .   The   changes in   spelling   would   be   dependent   on   the   rent   collector   and   his   limit   of   education.   Obviously   the   name   would   appear   to   be   derived from Christ's Town, and therefore the connection of the area with the activities of the church. In   1535   George   Colquhoun   succeeded   his   father   and   for   some   60   years   the   entry   of   the   name   was   either   Criston    or   Cryston . The "h" must have crept in again at a later period. Rentallers   became   proprietors   of   their   houses   and   land,   with   the   annual   rent   being   converted   to   feu   duty.   In   1635   the   lands   of Chryston were divided between various proprietors and feuers. Information   on   the   actual   development   of   Chryston   in   these   early   days   is   sparse,   but   standing   as   it   did   on   the   roads   from Glasgow   to   Falkirk   and   Stirling   and   from   Kirkintilloch   to   the   south   its   situation   must   have   appealed   to   many   travellers   of   the time. The   road   from   the   east   from   Mollanburn   (Mollinsburn)   followed   the   line   of   the   present   Gartferry   Road,   Stoneyetts   Road   (prior to   its   realignment)   to   Mudiesburn   (Moodiesburn),   then   by   the   Well   Brae   into   Main   Street   and   on   into   Garnkirk   estate   and   to   the west. Just prior to entering the estate the road from Auchinloch joined at that point. The   roads   then   were   not   as   we   know   them   today.   They   were   dirt   tracks   of   varying   width   hardened   by   the   feet   of   the   travellers, pack   horses   and   animals   being   taken   to   markets   in   Glasgow   and   Falkirk.   Probably   the   width   and   condition   of   the   Well   Brae   is a good guide to the roads of that time. A   survey   map   of   1795   shows   its   line.   There   are   some   dwellings   marked   in   "Cryston"   but   no   indication   at   all   of   Muirhead.   The larger   houses   of   Bedlay,   Gartferry   and   Garnkirk   are   shown   and   also   Claudhall   and   Drumgarel   (Drumcavil),   in   addition   to   the named farms of today: Davidston (1747), Muckcroft, Peathill and Blacklands. Around   1760   Bedlay   Well   came   into   use   as   the   main   supply   of   water   for   the   villagers.   Its   site   can   still   be   seen   today   about   50 yards   past   the   burn   bridge,   approaching   from   the   Chryston   end   of   the   Well   Brae   path.   It   is   marked   by   a   large   flagstone   next   to the   right   hand   wall.   There   is   also   a   sign   "Bedlay   Well"   and   a   large   hand   cut   into   the   stone,   though   vandalism   is   taking   its   toll   of these signs. The hand has been identified as that of Robert Allan, the local master builder! There   are   varying   reports   of   this   well.   One   states   that   water   was   only   procured   with   difficulty,   that   the   well   was   frequently   dry, and   people   went   down   the   stairs   to   it   with   a   saucer   and   waited   there   until   well   after   midnight   to   fill   their   vessels.   Another writer   describes   its   copiousness,   constancy   and   salubrity.   One   thing   on   which   there   is   agreement   was   that   the   water   was much superior to that brought in the next century to the area from Loch Katrine.
The Story of Chryston
by Neil Kidd