The River Kelvin is about 35km (22 miles) long. It flows from the Dullatur Bog near the village of Kelvinhead east of Kilsyth to its confluence with the Clyde in Glasgow. Of the many burns that flow into the river there are three main tributaries, the Glazert Water, the Luggie Water, and the Allander Water.
At any time of the year, a walk along the banks of the Kelvin is one of the most rewarding experiences Glasgow has to offer. Today we take for granted the benefits that the Kelvin brings to visitors and to all of us who live or work in the west of Glasgow. But it is only in recent years that the River has become treasured as a rich natural habitat and a place of unspoiled beauty in the heart of the city.
Fifty years ago, the River Kelvin was dead – a chemical sewer poisoned by the products of decades of industry. Following the closure of the paper mills, chemical and dye works in the 50s and 60s, it has taken thirty years of cleansing rainfall to heal the damage. Now the fish have returned and its tree lined banks provide cover for dippers, kingfishers and other birds. The botanist will find a wide variety of plants, many of them rare and even exotic.
The Kelvin provides a unique environment in Glasgow, which needs to be protected and improved.