The area around Glasgow has hosted communities for millennia, with the River Clyde providing a natural location for fishing. The Romans later built outposts in the area and constructed the Antonine Wall, remains of which can still be seen in Glasgow today.
Glasgow itself was founded by the Christian missionary Saint Mungo in the 6th century. He established a church at the place where the present Glasgow Cathedral stands, and in the following years Glasgow became a religious center. By the 12th century Glasgow had been granted the status of what can now be called a city. By the 16th century, the city’s traders and craftsmen had begun to wield significant influence and the city had become an important trading center with the Clyde providing access to the city and the rest of Scotland for merchant shipping. The access to the Atlantic Ocean allowed the importation of goods, which were then traded throughout the United Kingdom and Europe.
With the industrial revolution and the development of ship building industry in the 19th century Glasgow became one of the largest cities in the world, and known as “the Second City of the Empire” after London. Today Glasgow is Scotland’s largest city with a population of around 600,000 and 2.5 million in the city region.
In 2014, the world’s top travel guides have consistently named Glasgow as a must-visit destination of 2014, highlighting the city’s warmth, style and energy.
Glasgow was awarded European City of Culture in 1990. Just over twenty years after this prestigious accolade catapulted it into the cultural limelight, Glasgow’s creative energy continues to flourish with a passion that makes it one of Europe’s most exciting cities to visit. It is home to more than 100 cultural organizations including Scotland’s national orchestra, theatre, opera, and ballet companies and is also blazing an internationally acclaimed trail in contemporary art, design and music.
Glasgow has the greatest concentration of creative industries in Scotland, with more than 5,000 people employed in the cultural sector directly and more than 25,000 employed in the arts and creative industries more widely. The Riverside Museum was named 2013 European Museum of the Year
(EMYA). It is a UNESCO City of Music – one of only five in the world.
The city’s architectural heritage strides the centuries and reflects Glasgow’s medieval origins through its rise to a world manufacturing leader and on to a creative powerhouse. Additionally, Glasgow’s nineteenth-century townscape and the critical legacy of Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s work are assets of world renown.
Glasgow was ranked as the eighth best sports city in the world at the SportBusiness Ultimate Sports City 2014 Awards.
The city’s super-league shopping status was confirmed in 2008 when Glasgow was named the best place to shop in the UK outside London’s West End for the fourth consecutive year by Experian in its Retail Ranking – a position, which they expect Glasgow to hold until at least 2018.