Eastwood Park Theatre & Leisure Centre

Eastwood Park Theatre & Leisure Centre

There had been an idea of developing a theatre in Eastwood since the 1940s and it finally came to fruition when Eastwood District Council were able to purchase 40 acres of land from the Eastwood Park Estate, including the beautiful mansion house.


The last family to occupy the estate was the Weirs. William Douglas Weir (1877-1959) was the son of James Weir, joint founder of G. & J. Weir & Co., the Cathcart engineering firm which went on to become Weir Pumps and then the Weir Group. He succeeded his father into the business but also served in wider roles both in government, politics and industry. From 1914, he made Eastwood House in Giffnock his family home.

After his death, his son inherited the estate and sold it to Renfrew County in 1967 for the sum of £47,500. In 1971 Eastwood House was refurbished and opened as a community facility and plans for the recreation centre, to include a theatre, were underway.

The build cost £600,000 and the complex was opened formally on 8th January 1973 with a grand gala. Sir Hector Munro, the Scottish Secretary of State had the honour of opening it.

The complex had a 25 metre pool, a learners pool, turkish and sauna suite, a theatre, cafeteria and community hall. With 300 seats it was hoped that the theatre would attract top amateur and professional companies. This has certainly proved the case over the years.

Carmichael Hall was named after David S Carmichael, Chairman of Eastwood Council 1952 – 67 who is credited with the inspiration for building the complex.

One interesting point is that the complex was originally designed to allow an extension to incorporate an indoor bowling green or an ice rink!

The first production put on at the new theatre was a farce called The Schoolmistress by Arthur Pinero. It was performed by a local amateur dramatic group, The Giffnock Theatre Players on the 24th – 27th January 1973.

After 34 years service, the complex was refurbished at a cost of £1.75 million and reopened on the 22 Feb 2007. Some beautiful fused glass windows designed by Laura Clark were added as a feature.

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