Carradale Pier

on Feb 14, 2018

In the Glasgow Herald of January 17, 1848, extracts from the Tidal Harbours Commission Report, concerned with the state of the fishing trade in the west of Scotland reported that; “At Skipness, a projecting point at the north end of Kilbrannan Sound, a fishing pier, extending 60 yards off-shore in an easterly direction, with a return head of 32 yards to the northward, was erected in 1839 at a cost of £2997, two-thirds of which were contributed by the Fishery Board on the part of the public. The pier has 5 feet depth at low water and is a great accommodation to the 60 boats belonging to the place, and to others which frequent the favourite fishing grounds of Kilbrannan Sound, as well as to the steamboats passing along the coast. A pier at Carradale would also be a great benefit.” Glasgow Herald, February 18,1856 Kilbrannan shore, Carradale (1898) However, Carradale would have to wait...

The wreck of the Tynwald.

on Jan 26, 2018

This article comes from a brief snippet from the Greenock Advertiser in September 1866 regarding the Campbeltown paddle steamer Herald. “The Steamer Herald.—It was rumoured in town yesterday that the charterer of the steamer Tynwald, which we noticed on Thursday as having gone ashore at Skye, has offered terms for chartering the steamer Herald, employed on the Campbelton route. It is said if the offer is accepted, she will likely proceed to Iceland at once for the purpose of bringing cattle thence. The Herald was off her usual station yesterday.”—Greenock Advertiser, Sept 22, 1866. Although the report was shown to inaccurate, it did highlight an interesting story. “Steamer Herald.—The report that this favourite steamer was about to be dispatched to Iceland is incorrect. Today she was laid up in the East Harbour for the season.”—Greenock Telegraph, September 22, 1866. In 1866, the Isle...

Herald and Gael

on Jan 25, 2018

This article highlights some of the opposition to the Campbeltown and Glasgow Steam Packet Joint Stock Company’s near monopoly of the Campbeltown route in the latter half of the 1800s. In the earlier part of the century, Campbeltown was served by this locally owned company from 1826 and the centenary history is presented in another article. In addition, in those early years, the Londonderry steamers regularly called at Campbeltown and picked up some of the trade, but gradually this connection was withdrawn. It was in the aftermath of the American Civil War with Clyde shipyards, now expert in building fast, sturdy coastal craft, that excess capacity meant prices for new ships began to drop and Messrs Little & Co., with a long history in coastal trading, began a new enterprise in 1866, placing a fast paddle steamer, Herald, on the route from Glasgow and Greenock to Campbeltown....

Colintraive

on Jan 20, 2018

The origins of the ferry at Colintraive are obscure but pre-date the introduction of steam on the Clyde. The early steamboat guidebooks refer to the ferry in the Kyles of Bute. “From Rothesay the channel, for some miles, takes a north-westerly course, leaving the Clyde, and taking the name of the Kyles of Bute, which encircles half the island. In sailing through this channel, several agreeable prospects are met with. A few miles farther on to the right is the opening of Loch Striven; and near it the house of Southall, Campbell; about 8 miles from it is a ferry called Collintray; close to it are some rocky islands, and the mouth of Loch Ridden, where is Red Island, on which are the ruins of a castle of that name, used as a garrison, in 1685, in favour of Monmouth.”—The Steamboat Companion, James Lumsden & Sons, Glasgow, 1820. The construction of the road down Glendaruel in the...

Ormidale

on Dec 20, 2017

In 1854, the laird of the estate of Ormidale, at the head of Loch Riddon in the Kyles of Bute, took steps to emulate his neighbours and begin feuing property for the construction of villas and summer homes for the wealthy residents of Glasgow and the industrial belt. His initial acts were the construction of a pier and hotel at the relatively remote location, and the following year, efforts to attract summer residents began in earnest. The pier was officially opened in July, 1856. Glasgow Herald, May 8, 1854 Glasgow Herald, June 12, 1854 Ormidale Pier (Spencer) Ormidale Pier Loch Riddon is a typical west coast estuarine loch fed by the river Ruel. About two-thirds of the way up the loch, it becomes very shallow and so the pier was constructed close to the point where it could be navigated by the steamships of the day. It was at the end of 1855, that the Glasgow and Lochfyne Steam...

Tigh-na-bruaich

on Dec 16, 2017

The village of Tighnabruich lies west of the mouth of Loch Ridden in a sheltered location with spectacular views to the south, down the western arm of the Kyles of Bute. The remote site is passed over in the early guides and accounts of sailing through the Kyles. Lumsden’s Steamboat Companion gives no mention, even in its later editions:— “From Rothesay the channel, for some miles, takes a north-westerly course, leaving the Clyde, and taking the name of the Kyles of Bute, which encircles half the island. Opposite to Rothesay bay is Auchenwilliam, Kirkman Finlay, Esq.; and 2 miles on the left is Port Bannatyne Bay and Village which, as well as Rothesay, is the occasional retreat of sea-bathing visitors; at the head of the bay stands Kames Castle, Hamilton, a romantic situation; and near it, an old tower, in ruins. In sailing through this channel, several agreeable prospects are met...

Kames

on Dec 9, 2017

This little article was aimed at cataloging the origins of the steamer pier at Kames, on the Kerry shore of the Kyles of Bute, just a mile or so from Auchenlochan and a few miles from Tighnabruaich. However, the impact of the Kames Gunpowder Works in the development of the surrounding area has held a fascination for me over the years. What follows is a brief account of the Gunpowder Works and this is followed by an account of the subsequent feuing and the construction of the steamer pier to anchor the community of Kames. Gunpowder is a mixture of charcoal and sulfur with saltpetre (nitrate) as oxidant and in 1839, a company was set up at Millhouse, near Kames on the Kyles of Bute, to refine saltpetre and produce the explosive mixture. A good account of the works appeared in the Glasgow Herald in 1853. “Kames Gunpowder Company’s Works.—(from the Greenock Advertiser.) Among the many...

Auchenlochan

on Dec 2, 2017

Feuing on the Poltalloch estate two miles south of Tighnabruaich on the Kyles of Bute began in 1859. Despite the natural beauty of the area and the safe anchorage it provided for yachting, the absence of a pier was a major drawback, and it was not until almost twenty years later that Mr. Malcolm of Poltalloch applied for permission to develop a pier. “New Pier in the Kyles of Bute.—The Board of Trade report that they intend to proceed with the Provisional Order applied for by Mr. John Malcolm of Portalloch to enable him to construct a pier at Auchenlochan, Kyles of Bute. The pier will extend 75 yards into the sea, and is estimated to coast £2,200.”—Northern Whig, March 8, 1878 “Auchenlochan Pier.—A fine new iron pier situated Auchenlochan, on the Argyllshire coast, a mile and three-quarters south of Tighnabruaich, has recently been opened, The new structure, the cost of which has been...