Coltness Primary School - My First School
It was in August 1974 that I started at Coltness Primary School. It is incredible to think that forty years have now passed since that scarcely remembered Summer's day. Although I have changed a lot in the interim, I was pleased to discover on my return to Wishaw in 2009 that the school itself had changed less; but equally saddened to hear that Coltness Primary School - at least in its structural form - would soon be no more.
Coltness Primary School has been demolished and a new school (Calderbridge Primary) has been built, in which were amalgamated the pupils of Coltness Primary School and Lammermoor Primary School. Coltness Primary School thus closed its doors for good at Easter 2010.
This website is dedicated to Coltness Primary School and its former staff and pupils. I very much hope that it evokes some good memories.
Coltness Primary School Being Demolished - 28/8/2010
Arriving at Coltness Primary School
The first sight to greet most visitors will be the Main Entrance Hall
It is a sad reflection of these times in which we live that the Main Entrance to Coltness Primary School is now protected by a buzzer entry system. When admitted in this fashion, the hall pictured below will be the first sight which visitors to the school will see. From here, one can take the stairs up to among other things the Staff Room, turn left for the Main Hall and Dining Room, or right for Headmistress Miss Fraser's office and the corridor leading to the main body of the school.
The office of school janitor, Douglas Ballantyne, who has served the school in this capacity for fourteen years, can also be found off a corner of the Main Entrance Hall.
Coltness Primary School - The Main Entrance Hall
The Gym Hall and Dining Room
Memories galore for me
The multi-purpose hall at Coltness Primary School holds a great many memories for me, through a wide range of different activities, ranging from school dinners, to, "Gym time," as I believe we called it, to participating in school shows. I would like to thank the young netballers and their coach who made way for me to take the photographs of the hall.
I was by no means a regular for school dinners at Coltness Primary School. I believe I, "Indulged," perhaps no more than a dozen times in my seven years at the school. I tended to go home for lunch or bring a pre-packed lunch with me in the morning.
I do not have very clear memories of what was served during the dinners that I did have at Coltness Primary but I seem to remember steamed cabbage and definitely remember the watery custard! I am sure that in these Jamie Oliver times, the menu has changed considerably.
I have very vivid memories of the stage at Coltness Primary. I remember performing on it in shows, attending Prize Giving ceremonies which were held upon it and even operating the stage curtains as shows were in progress. I seem also to recall attending an event at one stage where a panel of prominent footballers and others associated with the game held a question and answer session for Coltness Primary pupils and their parents, though I don't recall who attended or what year that would have been.
The GP Room
I think it stood for, "General purpose."
I was surprised when I entered what I had known as the GP Room at Coltness Primary. The room is located in the infant section of the school and in my time at the school was a fairly bare room with a polished wooden floor where we would often watch educational TV programmes designed for schools. The carpeted GP Room of the modern era, however, is a much brighter and more attractive affair.
Coltness Primary School's Classrooms
Utilised for a variety of different purposes in modern times
I was surprised to learn from Cotlness Primary School Headmistress, Miss Fraser, that there are presently only eight classes at the school. If I remember correctly, there were fourteen or fifteen in my day. This has meant that a lot of the classrooms are now used for different purposes and that Classrooms 1 and 2 are now devoted to a separate nursery school.
The classrooms in the main wing of the school are in part devoted to such as a Music Room, an Art and TV Room - and something which could never have been conceived of when I was at Coltness Primary: a Computer Room!
Coltness Primary School's Staff Room
Not somewhere I frequented as a pupil
The Staff Room at Coltness Primary is of course where the teachers escape for some peace and quiet. It is not somewhere I of course had access to during my time at Coltness Primary but I do vaguely recall having been in it at some unknown point in the past. I believe it may once have been used as a changing room for a school show. It was nice to go there during my recent visit to the school and chat with some of the present teachers - one of whom had not even been born when I attended the school!
Coltness Primary School's Replacement Under Construction - 4/3/2011
If you are a former pupil or staff member of Coltness Primary School, feedback can be left in the space below.
Please note, however, that all comments are subject to moderation prior to appearing on this site.
What are your Memories of Coltness Primary School? - Let everyone know in the space below
Rob Renwick on September 19, 2020:
Back in the 70s we used get periodic visits from a traveling music teacher called “Miss Sybil”. A very old, rather portly lady who used to play us music or educational programs on huge black “Hacker” portable radios; back when Great Britain used to manufacture things. Alas, like Coltness Primary, no more...
Gordon N Hamilton (author) from Wishaw, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom on August 01, 2019:
Thanks for posting, James. I hope life has treated you well, since. You have also reminded me that I have never gone to take photos of the new building that sits on the site now for a little addition to the page. I must arrange to do that soon.
james brabender on July 31, 2019:
i went to coltness primary and left to go to coltness high in 1970-72 then wishaw high from 1972-74
anonymous on September 10, 2013:
@anonymous: She is fantastic iam in p6
anonymous on September 10, 2013:
@anonymous: Miss McCrum now teaches primary 4
anonymous on September 10, 2013:
I loved miss Fraser and miss her so much iam in p6 at calderbridge primary which is in the same spot as it was but can't beat it.
anonymous on September 10, 2013:
I was at coltness and now iam in the new building as a pupil coltness no other school can beat you you may not have had all the fancy stuff but I miss you .you will always be in my heart and stay there forever.
anonymous on July 13, 2012:
I was a pupil at Coltness Primary beginning around 1967 in Miss Anderson's (later Mrs Smith) class. I also remember the glamorous Miss Barnsley in the infants and sitting on the floor in the GP room cross-legged singing "Michael Finnegan" or "Aiken Drum" or watching educational TV (in black and white). Later on I had Mrs MacIntyre, Miss Tweedlie (I liked them both) and Mr Kirk (we didn't get on at all well). Those last two ended up getting married to each other. Mr Russell was the headmaster at the time. What became the sports field, was just a muddy field for what seemed like a long time. Mr Murray, the Janitor (and bringer of the sawdust when someone pee-d the floor (or worse)), lived in the corner house next to the field. School dinners were usually some kind of meat or stew with scooped mashed potatoes and steamed vegetables followed by treacle (or other flavoured) tart and very runny custard served in large reddish metal jugs. Alternatives were sago ("frog spawn"), tapioca or semolina. Playtimes consisted of playing hide and seek, chases, red rover, marbles, swapping petrol station football coins or playing football with a tennis ball. I too remember the stage in the dinner hall where I was a butterfly in a play where we all sang Cilla Black's "Sing a Rainbow" and I was mortified because, as well as cardboard wings, I had to wear a pair of girls green tights for the part (yeugh!!). Later a Mrs McKelvie gave music classes and her son was also a pupil there at the time. Free milk in little glass bottles, later replaced by those horrible pyramid cartons in orange hexagonal crates which always contained warm milk in the summer (yeugh again) until Maggie Thatcher stopped the free milk. On the way home, we'd cut through the back of the Esso garage (Websters?) and play in the junk cars he had out back. I now live in the U.S.A. but still have fond memories of Coltness Primary and was saddened to hear that it's been demolished.
anonymous on September 03, 2011:
@anonymous: I was among the last primary 7 class in the school. Looking at these photos it feels like such a long time ago. I miss the place.
KarenTBTEN on March 18, 2011:
I have no memories of Coltness Primary School, just memories of other places that have been torn down. SquidAngel blessings (from the Preschool and Elementary Angel at
anonymous on November 17, 2010:
I was the last ever Primary 7 pupil to be in the school and I miss it so much. And my Primary 7 teacher Miss McCrum , was well good.
anonymous on October 17, 2010:
I went to coltness from 1969 till 1976. I always remember my first class. we were in room 4 I think. some had desks but others had to kneel at the chair to do class work. I remember kneeling. teachers I remember were miss mcclean,mr russell(headmaster),mrs stevenson, mr Kirk, mr johnson(headmaster) mrs brown (secretary). trips I went on were to belguim,holland,france(1974). all in all it was a good time ( I think)
anonymous on September 30, 2010:
Hi there , i thought i would write to say how much i enjoyed your article on Coltness Primary.My children went there and where very upset at having to move.My children enjoyed your pictures as today most of the school was pulled down.It was a very sad day for them,they miss their school and miss fraser.I have taken some pictures of the demolition process which are quite traumatic to some.