Are you seeking some of the best facts about Glasgow?
This is the article for you!
Whether you are a young student eager to explore the buzzing nightlife, or you prefer something a little more sedate such as the many historical aspects of the city, you are sure to find something in this list of facts about Glasgow that will surprise you.
Although it is not Scotland’s capital, it is the country’s largest city in the country.
Beneath its iconic Victorian and art nouveau architecture and breathtaking vistas lies a city teeming with intrigue and history.
Glasgow traces its origins back to the 6th century when it was founded by Saint Mungo, a Christian missionary.
He laid the foundation for a church near the Molendinar Burn, the very location where the current Glasgow Cathedral now proudly stands.
In more recent history, during the 18th to 20th centuries, thanks to trade, particularly textiles, and shipbuilding Glasgow was incredibly prosperous.
Though many of these trades no longer operate they have left an indelible mark on this amazing city.
People from Glasgow are referred to as “Glaswegians”.
Their warmth and friendliness are something that often leaves a lasting and positive impression on those who visit the city.
Whether you’re a seasoned visitor or just contemplating a visit or even a permanent move to this splendid city, we have compiled 45 fun facts about Glasgow we hope you will enjoy.
Glasgow’s Weird and Wonderful Nicknames
What better way to start our list of facts about Glasgow than its name?
The city has a number of unusual nicknames for one reason or another.
1. The Dear Green Place
A name derived from the Gaelic word “Glaschu” meaning “green hollow” or “green glen.
2. No Mean City
A Biblical line; quoted by Paul the Apostle to describe the beauty and openness of his own home town, Tarsus.
3. Second City of the Empire
A reference to the Victorian-era industrial past of the city.
4. The Big Smoke
A term used for many large cities that were shrouded in smog and smoke from the industrial works during the Industrial Revolution.
5. Red Clydeside
Based on a post-World War I reputation as a centre of left-wing activity.
What food is Glasgow famous for?
Glasgow is well known for its assortment of different foods that are truly unique to the area.
Plus, the variety of food available in the city really gives people an insight into Glaswegian culture.
When you are here there are some dishes, you simply must try!
This has got to be the most famous of all Scottish dishes. Made from sheep liver, lungs and heart and minced with oatmeal, herbs, and spice. Traditionally stuffed into a natural casing of sheep intestines before being boiled or baked. It’s a foodie representation of what Scotland is all about.
Scottish Salmon is exported on a global scale. Its exceptional quality and taste are due to Scotland’s coastal waters being cold, clear, and free from pollution, providing an ideal environment for salmon to thrive.
8. Roll & Square Sausage
Lorne Sausage consisting of two parts of one roll sandwiching a square sausage made from beef or occasionally pork. It is deep-fried in a pan with butter and is usually accompanied by some red or brown sauce.
9. Deep Fried Mars Bar
Although its origins are in Aberdeenshire, it quickly gained popularity among the patrons of Glasgow, ultimately becoming one of the signature dishes of the city.
10. Cullen Skink
A hearty soup made primarily with smoked haddock, potatoes, onions, and milk or cream. The name “skink” is believed to be derived from an old Scottish word for “broth” or “soup.”
A staple for many of us particularly in winter, porridge is a Scottish staple and traditionally served hot. The well-known brand Scott’s Porage Oats has been in operation for 140 years.
A sweet biscuit that is known for its crumbly texture and buttery flavour.
Glaswegian Born Famous People
Glasgow has produced a wealth of famous and influential individuals across various fields.
Here are some notable people who were born in the city of Glasgow.
13. Billy Connolly
One of the world’s most notable comedians known as “The Big Yin” was born in Anderston, Glasgow.
A singer, and actress who won the 1969 Eurovision Song Contest, sang the title song for the James Bond movie “The Man with the Golden Gun” as well as appearing in several movies.
15. Gerry Rafferty
The singer-songwriter behind hits like “Baker Street” and “Stuck in the Middle with You” was born in Paisley, just outside Glasgow.
16. Sir Alex Ferguson
The legendary football manager, best known for his tenure at Manchester United, was born in Govan, Glasgow.
17. Gerard Butler
The actor has appeared in many movies arguably some of his best include “300” and “London Has Fallen” he was born in Paisley, near Glasgow.
18. Emeli Sandé
The multi-award-winning singer and songwriter, known for hits like “Read All About It” and “Next to Me,” was born in Sunderland, England, but raised in Alford, Aberdeenshire.
19. Lorraine Kelly
The much-loved presenter known primarily for her work on GMTV’s daytime television. She was appointed as an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 2012 for her services to charity and the armed forces.
20. Sharleen Spiteri
The lead singer of the Scottish rock band Texas was born in Bellshill, which is in the Greater Glasgow area.
Facts about Glasgow’s Past
21. John Logie Baird
Educated in Glasgow, John Logie Baird an electrical engineer and innovator demonstrated the world’s first live working television system on 26 January 1926.
22. Rudolf Hess
Hitler’s second-in-command, Rudolf Hess, was held in Maryhill Barracks in Glasgow, after his famous 1941 ‘peace flight’ when his plane crashed in Eaglesham.
23. 144 Cinemas
In 1939 there were as many as 144 cinemas in Glasgow housing more seats per head than anywhere else in the UK at that time.
24. Charles Macintosh
Glasgow-born Charles Macintosh was the inventor of the modern waterproof raincoat, first sold in 1824. The Mackintosh was named after him though it is spelt slightly differently.
25. Glasgow Cathedral
The cathedral sits over St. Mungo’s original church in 1197. It is one of the very few cathedrals left standing untouched in Scotland following the Reformation in the 16th Century.
26. The University of Glasgow
Founded in 1451, The University of Glasgow is now the fourth oldest university in the world.
In the late 17th century, Scottish linen was a major export to England. In 1680, the linen industry employed about 12,000 people in the Glasgow area.
28. Tobacco Trade
Being strategically located, by 1760 Glasow’s trading port had outstripped London as the main port for tobacco imports in the United Kingdom.
Quick Fire Facts
These quick-fire facts about Glasgow provide a snapshot of the city’s diverse and dynamic character.
There are 20 museums in the city, and you can visit all of them for free.
30. Britannia Panopticon
The music hall venue Britannia Panopticon is the oldest surviving music hall in the world.
31. Green City
Glasgow is one of the greenest cities in the UK, with numerous parks and green spaces.
Glaswegians are known for their friendliness, often dubbed the “Friendliest People in the UK.”
33. Football Rivalry
The city is divided by a fierce football rivalry between Rangers and Celtic, known as the “Old Firm.”
Glasgow Green is one of the world’s oldest public parks.
Glasgow holds the UNESCO City of Music title, recognising its rich musical heritage.
36. Longest Bar in Europe
Horseshoe Bar in Drury Street boasts the longest pub bar in Europe at an impressive 104 ft and 3 inches.
37. 1,500 years Old
Glasgow is thought to be at least 1,500 years old.
38. Tallest Cinema
Cineworld Glasgow is the tallest cinema in the world, standing at an impressive 62 metres high.
39. First Ever International Football Match
In 1872 Glasgow hosted the first international football match.
Sloans was the very first restaurant in the city which opened in 1797.
41. Subway System
Home to the third oldest subway system in the world, all of Glasgow’s tube trains are painted bright orange.
Now home to almost 2 million people, Glasgow was one of the first cities in Europe to reach a population of one million in the late 19th Century.
43. 19th Century Swimming Baths
Arlington Baths Swimming Club opened on 1 August 1871 and has operated for over 140 years.
44. Largest Nightclub
Located on Sauchiehall Street, The Garage is the country’s largest nightclub venue.
45. Busiest Road Bridge in Europe
Said to be the busiest road bridge in Europe, Kingston Bridge (which crosses the River Clyde) carries around 150,000 vehicles every day.
Are you Planning a Move to Glasgow?
We hope you enjoyed these 45 facts about Glasgow!
The city has much to offer prospective newcomers.
Aside from the practical issues such as job opportunities, education standards, and good transport links, compared to some other major UK cities, moving to Glasgow offers a more affordable cost of living, including housing and general expenses.
This diverse and multicultural city welcomes people from all walks of life.
When you are ready to make the move, it is worth hiring the services of a well-known removal company with a proven track record for providing quality house moves.
White & Company have been moving people all over the UK and Scotland including Glasgow for well over 150 years.
Plus, as founder members of BAR (British Association of Removers), you get that added extra peace of mind knowing that your belongings are in safe hands should anything go wrong.
You can contact us via a number of ways, by phone, by interacting with our chatbot, or by completing our online quotation form.
Either way, we will endeavour to contact you ASAP and arrange for a free-of-charge no no-obligation survey followed by a quotation for your move.
We look forward to hearing from you soon.
Max is a seasoned writer and blogger in the real estate and home moving sectors, as well as a knowledgeable source of information for expatriates living and working abroad. His detailed insights have helped thousands of people move and live abroad with greater simplicity and ease.