West Dunbartonshire

The village of Renton is situated in the Vale of Leven on the west bank of the River Leven just south of Alexandria and 2 miles (3 km) north of Dumbarton. The textile industry dominated the town and focused on printing, dyeing and bleaching, beginning with the Dalquhurn Works in 1715, followed by the Cordale Printworks in 1770. The town itself was created as a model-village in 1782 by Mrs Smollett of Bonhill who named it after her daughter-in-law, Cecilia Renton, a scion of the Rentons of Lammerton.

Many of the older properties in the town were demolished from the late 1950s and replaced by public housing. Notable remaining buildings include the former Millburn Free Church (1845), attributed to George Meikle Kemp (1795- 1844) but more likely the work of John T. Rochead (1814-78), the Masonic Temple (1885) and the Central Bar (1893). There is a railway station at Renton, with trains to Dumbarton and onwards to Glasgow. The 18th-century novelist Tobias Smollett was born nearby at Dalquhurn House and is commemorated by a 18-m (60-foot) high monument in the village.

Remarkably, in 1888, Renton Football Club beat West Bromwich Albion to win the 'World Cup', admittedly at a time when this was played for only between Scottish and English clubs. Members of this team included Neilly McCallum (1869 - 1920). The cup they won is now displayed in the Scottish Football Museum in Glasgow.

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