A New Landmark in North Glasgow

2022 saw the completion of Mitch Miller’s latest dialectogram ‘The Cowp/Nolly/The Claypits’ and its installation in a bespoke repurposed steel structure in the Claypits Local Nature Reserve, on the banks of the Forth-Clyde Canal.

The Claypits dialectogam shows the history of this complex, often contested site, from its central role in the early industrial revolution to its use as a rubbish tip, a wild and wooly playground for the local kids and a prime site for local doocots (pigeon lofts). As the site re-wilded, a diverse array of species made it their homw, so that even before the massive redevelopment by Scottish Canals the site was recognised for its ecological importance.

The Claypits are also a site of major social importance, providing a much-valued green-space to the people of Hamiltonhill, Possil, Woodlands and Port Dundas. The site is managed by CLNR, a grassroots organisation based in the local community, now set to change drastically with a major new housing development at Hamiltonhill.

Mitch has been working with the community since 2019 (taking a break for the pandemic…) as a Glasgow City Council Creative Communities Artist-in-Residence and then in an independently funded project led by CLNR and Glasgow Sculpture Studios. He has worked with various community organisations, activists, Church and youth groups, Asylum seeker organisations, ex-prisoners and drug rehabilitation programmes, as well as a wide range of local people Mitch and his research team (Cat Dunn, Divine Tasinda and Nichola Dilworth) reached out to over the course of the work.

The now complete work is the third in a loosely connected series of Dialectograms sited along the route of the Forth-Clyde Canal at Hamiltonhill, Lambhill and Kirkintilloch. This newest addition can be found at the Ellesmere Street entrance to the new Claypits, facing the community who played such a huge part in making the drawing. 

Hamiltonhill Claypits Local Nature Reserve: https://claypitslnr.co.uk/Glasgow Sculpture Studios: https://www.glasgowsculpturestudios.org/