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New housing in Parkhead - - 662474.jpg

Modern housing on Stamford Street
Barrowfield is located in Glasgow council area
Location within Glasgow
OS grid referenceNS616643
Council area
Lieutenancy area
  • Glasgow
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townGLASGOW
Postcode districtG31 / G40
Dialling code0141
UK Parliament
Scottish Parliament
List of places
55°51′07″N 4°12′44″W / 55.851977°N 4.212361°W / 55.851977; -4.212361Coordinates: 55°51′07″N 4°12′44″W / 55.851977°N 4.212361°W / 55.851977; -4.212361

Barrowfield is a neighbourhood of Glasgow, Scotland, close to Celtic Park, home of Celtic F.C., which lies immediately to the east. It is bounded by the A89 road (Gallowgate) to the north and the A74 (London Road) to the south.


Being an area of working class housing enclosed by main roads and railway lines, Barrowfield consequently developed a distinctive character. The original 1930s council housing scheme flats[1] (built to accommodate those cleared from Glasgow's 19th century slums in nearby areas such as Camlachie) became increasingly hard to let and were demolished in the 2000s to make way for more appealing houses.[2] A small section of the original tenements remain around the junction of Law Street and Overtown Street, though extensively refurbished.[3]

In the 1950s the area changed from a working-class neighbourhood like most other areas of the city to being a place renowned for its gangs, namely "The Torch" and "The Spur" whose territory was respectively located at the north and south ends of the main thoroughfare;[4][5][6] Each terrorised the other's patch, and the area was so violent that the fighting diminished in the 1980s only because the gang leaders realised that dealing in drugs was more profitable.[7] Unfortunately for the community, this meant the scheme had hundreds of drug abusers from all over Glasgow coming to the area to buy their "gear". Barrowfield therefore has a high mortality rate amongst the youth, largely due to drug abuse and suicide. In the early 21st century the area underwent a massive revamp,[2] but the drug problem persists and crime is still high.[8] In 2009, the data zone covering the neighbourhood was classed as the most deprived in Scotland.[4][9]

Footballer James McArthur[10][11] and actor Paul Brannigan[12][13] grew up in Barrowfield in the 1990s.


A historic football stadium, Barrowfield Park, was the home ground of Clyde F.C. between 1877 and 1898 prior to their move to Shawfield Stadium, and also hosted matches for Eastern F.C. and Albatross. However the ground was actually in the city's Dalmarnock neighbourhood, taking its name from the historic Barrowfield rural estate which once occupied much of the surrounding area.[14][15][16]

Modern housing in Barrowfield, with Celtic Park and Commonwealth Arena beyond (2013)
Modern housing in Barrowfield, with Celtic Park and Commonwealth Arena beyond (2013)

For many years, Celtic F.C. conducted most of their training routines at a facility to the east of Celtic Park named Barrowfield,[17] but it is also not within the boundaries of the present-day Barrowfield residential area west of the stadium. The source of this double naming stems from Junior club Bridgeton Waverley, who played at a ground named 'Barrowfield', also named after the historic estate and located approximately at Mountainblue Street today,[18][19] until the 1930s when that land was bought over for construction of the new housing scheme (the Nelson Recreation Ground a few blocks away was also demolished). Waverley moved about 0.7 miles (1.1 km) east to the other site, part of Westthorn Park, and named their new ground 'New Barrowfield'.[20][21] Celtic later took control of it as their training ground in the early 1960s[22] and the Barrowfield name became familiar to many football fans as a result, however it may be assumed the training ground is the same place as the housing scheme, which is not technically correct. Today there are still football pitches on the land which are owned and used by the club.[23][24][25]

After the 2014 Commonwealth Games was held in Glasgow, Barrowfield has international-class sporting facilities within walking distance: the Commonwealth Arena and Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome are in nearby Dalmarnock. The Crownpoint Sports Complex, a modern outdoor athletics track, is also nearby adjacent to St Mungo's Academy.[26]


  1. ^ Law St (c.1950), Virtual Mitchell
  2. ^ a b "Barrowfield Housing". The Glasgow Story. Retrieved 30 September 2017.
  3. ^ Barrowfield police incident: man rushed to hospital after serious assault, Glasgow Live, 1 December 2019
  4. ^ a b "'I don't see how this area can be the most deprived in Scotland'". SenScot. 20 October 2009. Retrieved 30 September 2017.
  5. ^ "On a razor's edge: Neds portrays 70s Glasgow in one light, but what was it really like?". The Scotsman. 18 January 2011. Retrieved 30 September 2017.
  6. ^ Watch The Blight: A Wonderful Documentary On Glasgow’s Barrowfield Gang Lands In 1982, Flashbak, 30 March 2014
  7. ^ "Janey Godley: Petrol bomb pensioner shows old gang hatreds die hard". The Scotsman. 6 January 2008. Retrieved 30 September 2017.
  8. ^ "Two in hospital after shocked Glasgow residents watched men attack each other with knives and a hammer". Daily Record. 28 February 2016. Retrieved 30 September 2017.
  9. ^ 'Most deprived' areas identified, BBC News, 29 October 2009
  10. ^ "Family feeling is the secret of success so far for Hamilton". The Herald. 26 February 2009. Retrieved 30 September 2017.
  11. ^ Programme exclusive: McArthur on gritty Glasgow upbringing, Crystal Palace FC match programme, 1 September 2019
  12. ^ "The Angels' Share star Paul Brannigan turned his back on a life of crime". Daily Record. 10 June 2012. Retrieved 30 September 2017.
  13. ^ Kevin Brannigan: East End drag artist on his battle to make his mark, Evening Times, 7 January 2019
  14. ^ "Bridgeton and Dalmarnock Historical Background". Glasgow History. Retrieved 26 September 2017.
  15. ^ "John Orr of Barrowfield". University of Glasgow. Retrieved 30 September 2017.
  16. ^ "Barrowfield House". The Glasgow Story. Retrieved 30 September 2017.
  17. ^ Pattullo, Alan (19 November 2011). "Training moved to Barrowfield as Lennoxtown suspected of playing a part in rising injury toll". The Scotsman. Johnston Publishing. Retrieved 5 December 2013.
  18. ^ "General view of Bridgeton, Glasgow, facing south-west, 1937 (ground is in bottom centre)". RCAHMS - Britain from Above. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
  19. ^ "General view of Bridgeton, Glasgow, facing north-east, 1933 (ground is in upper right)". RCAHMS - Britain from Above. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
  20. ^ "View around Belvidere Hospital, Glasgow, facing south-east, 1952 (showing three grounds: Parkhead left centre, Waverley mid centre, Strathclyde bottom centre)". RCAHMS - Britain from Above. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
  21. ^ "View around Belvidere Hospital, Glasgow, facing east, 1952 (showing three grounds: Parkhead upper centre, Waverley mid right, Strathclyde bottom left)". RCAHMS - Britain from Above. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
  22. ^ "Junior Football". Parkhead History. Retrieved 26 September 2017.
  23. ^ Celtic pitch plans for Barrowfield training ground expansion, Urban Realm, 6 June 2019
  24. ^ Celtic to redevelop Barrowfield training ground, BBC Sport, 5 June 2019
  25. ^ Celtic submit new training centre plans including indoor pitch at Barrowfield, Glasgow Times, 20 December 2019
  26. ^ "Glasgow Club Crownpoint Sports Complex". Glasgow Life. Retrieved 16 October 2017.