Us Glaswegians who proclaim the virtues of our city (whether you want to hear them or not) fancy ourselves as its cultural ambassadors and part-time tour guides.

We are the bane of taxi-drivers, fancying that we know faster and highly classified routes to all points of Glasgow’s parameters. This implies that our DNA is interred in these streets and that we belong to an anointed caste of savants to whom has been granted a higher level of knowledge.

Thus, I was intrigued to discover that one of Glasgow’s tour-bus firms, City Sightseeing, has added a new and counter-intuitive route to its portfolio of urban peregrinations.

This one promises a 90-minute safari through Glasgow’s east end, regarded as the delinquent sibling of the city’s artisan and well-behaved western arrondissements. From there, it would curl south, tracing the progress of the Clyde at the Cuningar Loop though Glasgow Green and Gorbals and right on through to the ancient principality of Govan.

The tour takes in Celtic ParkThe tour takes in Celtic Park (Image: free)

This’ll be interesting, I thought. I mean: I could transport you to all manner of architectural and historical landmarks east of Glasgow Cross. Generations of my family were directed to these neighbourhoods after disembarking at the Broomielaw, having fled Ireland’s An Gorta Mor. Many of us still make fortnightly pilgrimages to Celtic Park, the place in which our cultural identity is permitted to find its fullest expression.

It’s just that, well … they might not all conform to what your average visitor might expect from a tour of the city’s main sights. I also lived on the city’s south side for more than 25 years and, similar to the east end, it too has many built and natural VIPs to captivate you, though lacking perhaps the plucked and manicured finery of the west end and its man-buns and red corduroys.

And so, I hopped on their big red bus at Cathedral Street, just up from Queen Street station. Its usual embarkation point is round the corner at Hanover Street, but today that’s been deemed out of bounds owing to the annual Orange Parades that have annexed much of the city centre.

I’ve invited my 15-year-old grand-daughter, Orlaith, along for the experience. She’s got a keen and curious mind and I’d hoped that a couple of hours on a bumpy old omnibus with her bumpy old granddad excavating some bumpy old neighbourhoods wouldn’t tax her patience too much.

It’s a grand day for an outing like this. The summer, at last, has bowed to our entreaties and the city is basking in 18 degrees. And so, we take our seats at the back of the open top deck.

From Cathedral Street we turn down on to the High Street past Glasgow Cathedral, the Necropolis and Provand’s Lordship, the city’s oldest extant dwelling-house. The on-board recorded commentary does a thoroughly decent job of describing them and their place in Glasgow’s development.

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At this point, though, I’m tempted to provide my own observations and interpretations for Orlaith and more so as we hang left on to Duke Street and into the rough embrace of the East End.

I wanted to tell her how the High Street is one of the oldest in Scotland and how it’s been largely been neglected by a city council which has allowed it to fall into decrepitude. And how Duke Street and the Gallowgate and London Road were once home to the most intense concentration of pubs in Britain. And how the tenements that once stood here became slums where the poor Irish were consigned to sub-human conditions, disease and premature death.

This is supposed to be a day out for her, though: not an indoctrination programme and she seems genuinely engrossed in the on-board narration.

We come to Celtic Park and my emerald soul is pleased that all the big achievements are ticked off: the Lisbon Lions, the trebles, the attendance records and why we call it ‘Paradise’.

Of course, I’d have driven us all round to St Mary’s Church in Abercromby Street where Celtic was founded and where stands the beautiful memorial to the Great Famine. And obviously I’d have told everyone that this sculpture ended up here because the cowards at Glasgow City Council refused to have it anywhere else. But Orlaith can make her own mind up about all of this when the time comes.

Glasgow’s now showing off. We cut down through Bridgeton and Glasgow Green beckons us. Under this sky and from this vantage point it looks gorgeous as the Clyde sashays through it. The commentary dutifully informs us about its history, though I’d have paused awhile at the People’s Palace and said something about the McLennan Arch and the Doulton Fountain and the Grade-A listed Nelson’s column, older than the one on Trafalgar Square.

From there we proceed through Gorbals and it's here that the audio exposes a substantial gap in my knowledge about the disastrous Hutchie E developments and why the process of destroying the city’s glorious tenements was halted.

The tours go beyond the usual city centre and West End hauntsThe tours go beyond the usual city centre and West End haunts (Image: free)

The winter storms of January, 1968, had visited extensive damage on the unlovely new-builds while the old tenements had stood tall and prevailed against the tempest.

Now we’re in Pollokshaws and Pollokshields, the twin gateways to the south side. I’m pleased that there’s a decent account of the multi-generational South Asian and Sikh communities who have made their homes here and how they too along with the Irish have helped make my city great.

We reach Govan via the mini mansions of Maxwell Park in Pollokshields where there is rather too much about the history of the Maxwell family overlords who once somehow came to own most of this district.

I’d have spent more time in Govan, which is beginning finally to display its ancient charms. Its shipbuilding heritage gets a nod, but I felt moved to tell Orlaith that the Finnieston crane, glimpsed in the distance, was part of a large family which once flourished along this stretch. And that the yards they oversaw had once made this place the world’s greatest steam and iron shipbuilding centre. And that it was places like this which provided the muscle for victories in two world wars.

We come to Ibrox stadium and I venture to take a few steps in a Rangers supporter’s shoes. The magnificent Archibald Leitch main stand is duly honoured as is its grand marble staircase and the fact that Rangers have been at the top of the league for most of Scottish football’s existence. The two Ibrox disasters are mentioned, though I’d have paused here for a few moments in remembrance of them.

And why no mention of Rangers being the last Scottish club to have reached a European final and why nothing about the statue of John Greig by Andy Scott who also created the Kelpies at Falkirk?

 Ibrox stadiumIbrox stadium (Image: free)

As we leave the Paisley Road West and head back over the river we’re greeted by a wee Orangeman, recovering from his ambulatory exertions by the side of the road. He flicks us a friendly and warm-hearted V for Victory salute, which tells us that the spirit of Churchill lives on.

We’re told that the Kingston Bridge is one of the busiest in the UK and that it takes its name from Kingston, Jamaica, where Glasgow’s merchants gathered their riches from the tobacco trade. Yet nothing about their wicked profiteering from the slave trade.

We pass through what was once Anderston, beyond which lies Finnieston, now primped and gentrified by over-priced restaurants which think they’re the Café de la Paix. Yet nothing about how Anderston was levelled to make way for the M8 excrescence.

Leaving aside all my political and cultural prejudices the south and east Glasgow tour is worth a couple of hours of your time.

Even better, I think Orlaith appreciated it too. “I discovered so much about Glasgow and it made me proud,” she tells me with the aid of some coconut cake at Moyra Janes on Nithsdale Road.