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10 cool facts that you may not know about Lochee

Lochee is one of Dundee's most known areas. It became key to Dundee's development and growth in the late 19th and early 20th century. It has undergone an overhaul in the last decade and it is so brilliant to see! So to celebrate this wee special place, here are ten cool facts that you may not know about Lochee!

It used to be it's own town!

Lochee was its own town, it was established in the 12th century, but did not form part of Dundee until the 19th century.

Lochee means "eye of the loch"

Lochee's toponymy comes from the phrase "eye of the loch", which is in reference to Loch Balgay which was located to the west of the valley, in which the village was located.

It was home to the largest jute mill in the world!

Camperdown Works, which sat on the site of the Stack Leisure Park, was once the largest jute mill factory in the world. Encompassing a High Mill, loom mills as well as a train station, and even a school, some considered it to be a 'town within a town'. The Camperdown Works jute factory was demolished in the 1980s but the Cox's Stack and High Mill remain.

It gained the nickname of "Little Tipperary"

Lochee was also known as "Little Tipperary", this was because there was a high volume of Irish workers who moved to the area to work in the jute mills.

It had its own shopping centre

Just off the High Street you have the Overgate, just off the Hilltown you have the Wellgate, but did you know that Lochee had a shopping centre of its own? The Highgate Centre was built in the 1970s and was popular among locals in the area, but unfortunately as time went on, the centre started to be a hotspot for vandalism and was eventually demolished in 2012 as part of the redevelopment of Lochee High Street.

There have been two clocks on the High Street

On the subject of the High Street, Lochee has a silver clock which sits close to the southern end, but it wasn't the first clock. The first clock was black. When it was taken down for renovations, it got lost and it couldn't be found, so the new one we have today was put up in it's place.

It had its own picture house

Before the Odeon came to the Stack in the 1990s, Lochee actually had its own cinema, the Lochee Picture House, which opened in 1921. It was a popular local entertainment spot until its closure in the 1960s. The building still stands and has been repurposed for other uses over the years.

Lochee Park was a gift to the city

Lochee Park is a significant green space in the area, offering recreational facilities such as sports pitches and walking paths. It was gifted to the city by Sir James Low in 1890 and remains a popular spot for locals.

Lochee plays a key role in Dundee's transport heritage

Lochee was once served by its own railway station, which opened in 1861 as part of the Dundee and Newtyle Railway. Although the station closed to passengers in 1955 and to goods in 1965, the railway played a crucial role in the district’s development during the industrial era. Alongside this, Lochee had its own tram depot and railway station, the latter of which is still here today but it is now a pub.

The design of Cox's Stack was inspired by St Mark's Campanile

The Cox's Stack is the symbol of Lochee, and it can be seen as far as Broughty Ferry if you look very closely. But did you know that the design of the Stack was inspired by the Italian campanile architecture design that was used on St Mark's Campanile in Venice, Italy?


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