Inside Weir Pumps: An Interview

Currently named SPX Flow, Weir Pump Factory is situated in Cathcart along the White Cart Water. Before Weir Group’s take-over in the 1880s, it was a Carpet and Dye Works Factory. This timeline is common for many sites across Glasgow, depicting the changing industry from textile to machinery. Weir Pumps were known for their groundbreaking inventions in pumping equipment which were used primarily in the Cyde shipyards and steamships. During the First World War, the company made more aircraft than any other Scottish firm.

The building has two peculiar sides: the one along the White Cart is signed by a massive crane which is not functioning anymore, whereas the street-facing side, housing the Social and Welfare Building is an art-deco building of which the design is borrowed from Albert Kahn’s Trussed Concrete Steel Co prototypes which were fashionable in early 1900s as industry was growing globally.

In this interview, Ritchie, a resident of the neighborhood and a former employee, tells us about his memories of working there in his early 20s, the processes which were performed in the factory from transportation of materials to the waste disposal and his insights on the deindustrialization of Glasgow.


Key Themes: Industry, Deindustrialization, Infrastructure, Community