April 26 to September 26, 1988
THE Glasgow Garden Festival was the first event of its type to be held in the city.
It is credited with putting Glasgow back on the national and international map.
A 100-acre site was used to host the five-month event on the banks of the Clyde.
Three years before, the derelict docklands had been earmarked for high-density housing.
The decision to hold the festival there changed all that.
Millions of tonnes of earth were moved to create the contours of the site, before thousands of bulbs and some 300,000 trees and shrubs were planted.
Glasgow’s Garden Festival was the third of five national garden festivals held across the UK and many believe it was the most successful.
More than four million visitors attended the event.
And it was good news for around 5,000 children who were given the day off school to welcome royal visitors.
Those attending were able to enjoy horticultural displays, a miniature steam train, trams and the iconic Coca-Cola rollercoaster as well as a changing programme of events.
There was also an enchanted forest, floodlit fountain and 240ft viewing tower from which visitors could see right across the city.
It’s estimated the festival brought £100 million into the local economy, with a further £170m spent by visitors in the following five years.
The spot where it was held is now the site of the Glasgow Science Centre and tower and the IMAX cinema.