About Lenzie

Free Tickets for Villa builders Modern Lenzie developed after 1842 with the opening of the Glasgow to Edinburgh Railway and the building of a station at Garngaber to serve Kirkintilloch. Glasgow commuters then began building houses around the station urged on by the railway company which in the 1850s offered free season tickets to anyone building large villas close to its stations. When in the 1870s piped water became available there was a mini housing boom in Lenzie resulting in much of the Victorian village as well as all three main churches: Lenzie Union, Lenzie Old Parish and St Cyprian's. Plan of Medieval castle and Auld Kirk

The History of Lenzie

Lenzie's real history starts a lot earlier. Some of the earliest records of this area tell us the lands of Lenzie were owned by the Comyn family, who built a castle in Kirkintilloch on the site of a former Roman fort in what is now the Peel Park. At that time the name was written Lengze or Lenneth and later Lingie.

Place of Lenzie Parish The original Lingie was a parish extending from Kirkintilloch to Cumbernauld bounded on the North by the River Kelvin, on the south by the waters of the Logie Water and its tributaries and on the West by the Park Burn. The original parish church (St.Ninian's) was located at Oxgang where there now stands a tower known as the 'Auld Aisle' at the entrance to the graveyard. However, in 1644 a new parish church was built in Kirkintilloch (now the Auld Kirk Museum) and the parish split into Easter Lenzie (Cumbernauld Parish) and Wester Lenzie. When Wester Lenzie became the Kirkintilloch Parish, the name of Lenzie was all but lost.

Where there's muck there's brass

Old Aisle St.Ninians In truth "Lenzie" has a very tenuous claim to its name. Not only was the southern half of the village outside the original parish, but there were well-established hamlets at Boghead, Gallowhill, Millersneuk and Garngabe, any one of which could have been used for the village. But of them all, one stands out amongst the rest: in 1842 when a station was built to serve Kirkintilloch it was obvious to name after that town; but when the new branch-line station at Kirkintilloch necessitated a name change, what was wrong with that evocative 17th century name: the "Mugraeg of Auchinloch"? Not that the name (Campsie junction) was any better because it soon had to be changed to avoid confusion with Campsie Glen. Finally, in 1867,in a clever piece of marketing, a permanent name was found worthy of this aspiring commuter village: the old name of the parish to the North of the Station.

The Parish of Luggie Water

The origin of the name is not recorded, but it seems likely to be connected with the Luggie Water as the river largely defines the extent of the parish: it extends West to East roughly from the source to the outlet of the Luggie water; it extends south to North from the Luggie to the Kelvin, and even the main church was located on its banks. Many place names in the area have a common element (lin, ling, lug) suggesting a common origin. Burthlan Bridge Early forms of the river's name are Luggy( 1590), Luggie(1640) and Logie and an old name like this is often included in other local names, so it is notworthy that along the river we have Lenziemill (Linzeymill), Blairlinn (Plain of the linn), Mollins burn. Lingybeg and Longrig The river starts at "Lucken Hill" & Langdales. One of the main tributaries of the Luggie or "lingy" burn is the "bothlin burn" on which is located "Bedlay" castle which suggests an original name of "boeth-lan/boeth-lang" and which corresponds with a 1773 map which shows a place on the Bothlin burn: "Burthlan Bridge". The final evidence is on another stream feeding into the Luggie Water where there are two places juxtaposition: Longrig and Lingybeg (suggesting that modern "Lindsaybeg" means lingy or lenzie-beck)

The Meaning of Lenzie

As Lin / Ling / Lug are all related to water in scotland this is good evidence the the origin of the parish name stems from the water of the Luggie burn.

Luggie Burn

  • Ling: was the old Scots for the common heather and also applied as a prefix for bog-grass.
  • Lane: as in "Lene-onion" comes from Gaelic "lèan" - meadow, swampy plain.
  • Lug: is Scots for an ear, but it was also applied to root vegetable like potatoes and turnips which have too much leaf and stem. This was a result of being cultivated on land with too rich so that the plant puts all its efforts into growing a luxuriant top and "forgets" to grow its root. "Luggie" was therefore applied to ground which produced such crops - damp ground over-rich in organic remains.

So, the best guess is that Lenzie derives from the river's name which itself was named after a feature like a water meadow, bog or swamp and the central section of the Luggie water is certainly a lush flood plain. Many of the tributaries such as the Bothlin burn (although now drained) were little more than bogs in historic times, so "Lingie Water" as in "boggy water" was probably the historic meaning of the river name. Moreover the name is echoed in the more modern "Muckcroft" the "Mugraeg of Auchinloch" and "Boghead" which all point to the nature of the local terrain, which is what gave us the fabulous nature reserve of Lenzie Moss.

The final change from "Lingie" to Lenzie was simply a mistake. Early 'g's were written as a:yogh and later scribes incorrectly read this as 'z'. (A similar changed happened to Menzies which is most correctly pronounced 'Mingis')