New Lanark is an historic cotton-mill village situated a short distance southeast of Glasgow. This lovely, quaint village on the banks of the River Clyde has been painstakingly restored and is one of only five sites in Scotland to be listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
David Dale founded the village in 1785 at its precise location in order to take advantage of the only falls on the River Clyde. These falls were the power source for his cotton mills and from there a successful business flourished. As buildings sprouted up, workers came, and with the progressive ideas of his son-in-law, Robert Owen, the beginnings of one of the first ever ‘planned’ communities was formed. Owens provided workers and villagers with decent housing, schools, health care and abolished child labour creating a social system more than a century ahead of its time.
The village is a joy to explore and even a great stop if just for a rest or picnic along the inviting river bank. The visitor’s centre is filled with exhibits, displays and information and is the perfect place from where to begin any village tour. Be sure to visit the ‘Annie McLeod Experience’ ride and presentation from Annie, a mill ‘ghost’, who describes what life was like back in 1820.
New Lanark is approximately 40 kilometres from Glasgow. Follow M74 where signs to the village are well marked. Trains depart Glasgow Central every 2 hours during the week and every hour on the weekends, stopping at Lanark Station approximately 1.5 miles/2.5 km from New Lanark.