City Chambers

On my third day in Glasgow last year I went to see again all the sights I had visited when coming here for the first time back in 1990. I managed the whole lot except for the inside of the City Chambers and the Clyde bridges. Since then I crossed the Victoria Bridge several times, but only this month I eventually found the time for the Chambers tour.

There seems to be no point in trying to describe what you can easily Google out, so I’ll just note down a few quite personal observations.

The group of visitors was surprisingly neither too big nor too small, given the format is to “accommodate anyone walking in from the street to join the tour”. Most, if not all, of the others were obviously tourists; it felt slightly strange to be the city’s resident among them, the more so as to my disappointment I (apparently only I) every now and then didn’t fully understand what the guide was saying. (The consolation is that back in 1990 I hardly understood a single sentence.) On the other hand, judging by the looks of them I was probably below the group’s average age, something which already happens very rarely to me. Which was kind of refreshing.

In the Council Chamber we were seated on the councillors chairs; unlike twenty-two years ago I even used the chance to sit down for a while in the provost’s one. It proved to be less comfortable than the other ones, much less comfortable than those in the smoking area where I stay, but perhaps that’s on purpose, to give the provost a good incentive to prevent the councillors from procrastinating the meetings.

And I found out that my memory of the former provosts’ pictures portraying each with less facial hair than his predecessor was somewhat exaggerated – as memories tend to become over such a long time.

All in all it was a pleasantly spent hour, which despite a not untypical climatic feature I ended by crossing the suspension footbride for the first time and returning to “my” side of the Clyde by using, after two decades, the Glasgow Bridge once again.

(That is to say, unless my memory misleads me about which particular bridges I had crossed backed then. Oh well…)



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