As high rise flats across the city are demolished the 22-storey Anniesland Court has official protection.

The building, which contains 150 flats, has had pride of place in Crow Road for more than 40 years and its occupants are more than happy to be living in one of Glasgow’s famous landmarks.

Alison McConnell has lived there for 25 years and considers herself privileged to have her home after the recent surge of high rise flats being demolished.

She said: “Glasgow is a city of high rise buildings; I didn’t realise until recently how lucky I am to live here.”

Alison is just one of the many people who have found not just a house but a home in the Grade A listed building.

At the base of the flats there is what the residents call the ‘tea room’ -- a busy drop-in centre for residents to come, have a cup of tea and a chat with each other.

The centre is one of the main features that gives the flats such a community feel.

David McGuire, who has lived there for 19 years and is chairman of the residents’ association, explains why the tea room makes a difference to everyone.

He said: “It gives the place a heart. Here, you are never lonely, there is always someone around.”

David speaks for many of his neighbours when he says he is proud to be living in such a great place.

He confesses though that it was a bit of a surprise when the block of flats were listed.

He said: “It makes me chuckle when I think of it -- somewhere like Edinburgh Castle is in the same category as us.

“But this is our castle.”

Luigi Dimattia, who holds the crown of the oldest resident with a grand total of 39 years behind him, explains the reason why he has stayed so long and why Anniesland Court attracts so many people.

He said: “It’s all about location -- everything is on your doorstep here or it is easy to get to.

“There are plenty of bus stops, a train station down the road and shops all over the place. It is a hub of activity.”

And if that all gets too much and you want some peace and quiet the residents have the amazing views to ponder over.

Nearly every resident admits to having a pair of binoculars as you can see north to the Campsie Fells and west along to Clydebank.

David remembers the first time he went to the top floor to take in the scenery.

He confesses: “You think you know the place and then you go up. I felt that sitting at the window I was sitting with God, it’s that high up.”

Neighbour Margaret McGrow says her favourite time is at night when you get the best views.

She said: “The cars with their lights on coming up Crow Road look like pearls, it’s beautiful.”

With panoramic views, everything on your doorstep and friends not just neighbours it is easy to see why the building is listed. It is a feature that shouldn’t be touched.


There’s more to be done for residents

The multi-storey marvel may be an A-listed historic landmark but when it comes to protecting the building, residents believe more should be done.

David McGuire said that although the listed status is great, it causes major problems trying to maintain the flats.

He said: “If we want to change anything or have something done we have to ask Glasgow Housing Association and they usually tell us no as we can’t change any feature of a listed building. It’s like fighting a losing battle.”

Resident Alan Stewart knows all too well the problems that this has caused. What he thought was gloss paint on the walls turned out to be a sheet of wetness that had seeped through.

The lack of cladding on the outside of the building means inside the wet is rotting away the cement walls.

He said: “It’s so frustrating, it is not an old monument you can leave to rot -- people have to live in it. I understand we are a showpiece for high rise flats but it is so run-down here.”

Alan’s comments echo the feeling of many residents who have been bombarding GHA for cladding to be put on the outside of the building -- but it is not allowed under heritage rules.

A GHA spokesman said: “We are aware of a dampness issue and carried out substantial work in 2008 to eliminate water penetration.

“Since then further investigations have been carried out to identify possible causes of dampness and we are now proposing further work to drying areas, which will include insulating walls.

“As it’s a Grade A listed building, full planning approval must be obtained before any work can be carried out. This includes consultation with Historic Scotland and can be a lengthy process.”