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The Radical's Road in 1820

The Salisbury Crags path at Arthur's Seat is known as the Radical Road but few have little inkling about its origins. The suggestion of putting unemployed weavers, many from the west of Scotland to building the track came from Walter Scott in the aftermath of the abortive 1820 Rising, also called the Radical War.

"Glasgow" at this time, was various small villages and hamlets; places like Bridgeton, Calton and Anderston. In all of these communities the main occupation was weaving, handloom and mill both. The weavers - or at least the handloom weavers - enjoyed traditionally a semi professional status, dictated by the nature of their work. They worked to commission. They could decide upon their own hours of work and could decide upon periods of leisure if they were willing to forego some proportion of their earnings in the short term. In these aspects they had something in common with smiths and wrights and shoemakers, all of whom had similar advantages over wage earners. …