George Wilson (Homebuilders Ltd) was registered on 2nd October 1926, however joinery in the Wilson family can be traced back to Tom Wilson (joiner and wheelwright) around the early 1820 when the family were carrying out joinery work on weaving looms as well as cartwheels. Tom Wilsons son James is recorded as employing four men and it is James son (Toms ) Grandson George who finally registed the business in 1926. George having married found prosperity with the business but also personal tradgey when only one of his seven children survied. Plauge is said to have caused this personal tragedy.
As growth and changes in industry continued especially with the loss of repairing hand looms and wheels the company looked towards other industries. With the First world war changes swept the company and around this time local authourities began to push forward house building programmes. Around 1935 the name of George Wilson Stonehouse was registered and whilst they continued to trade as joiners they were subcontracting to other larger building firms. Around the mid to late 1940’s the firm decided to venture into the housebuilding market as a main contractor. One of its first main contracts was with the East KIlbride development corporation in 1947.
Pre-fabrication of house building materials in the early 1950’s saw the company manufacture most of the housebuilding components at its factory in Stonehouse . The company had its own premises which included joiners shop, a transport pool of machinery and men as well as running its own buses for its workers when it was working in central Scotland. The attached articles in the Scotsman in 1968 and in Wilsons own sales brocheure outline just how big a building company they were. The company was involved in many house building programmes across the county which included the following.
The following are just a range of building projects that George Wilsons were involved in.
16 Houses and 7 Garages at Newarthill.
260 Atholl Steel Houses at Robroyston in 1946.
120 houses and 26 Garages at New Stevenson in 1966
Houses and Garages in Kirkfieldbank by Lanark 1966
171 houses at St Leonards East Kilbride 1966
370 Houses at Abronhill Cumbernauld 1968
A good proportion of the village worked in Wilsons, and it provided apprenticeships for many young men on leaving school. Today the village still has a good number of trades men who travel outwith the village following whatever work they can find.
The company were versatile, and flexible and also diversified into supplying the funeral market with market with coffins as the attached receipts from 1947 show.
Unfortunately economic changes in the late 1980 and 1990 took there toll on the company and its final dissolvement was made on 17th February 2012.
The following attached document provides the memories of a former Wilson employee Mr Tom Sorbie.
The following photographs depict some of Wilsons workers and family days out.